In 2019, Denmark notified regulations (amendments to the Environmental Protection Act) relating to stricter requirements in the four Danish low-emission zones (2018/607/DK). This is attached as BASIC2. The principal Act itself – the Environmental Protection Act - is attached as BASIC1.
The regulations were then tightened for lorries and buses – and low-emission zone requirements for light goods vehicles were introduced – as of 1 July 2020.
This bill lays down the detailed rules for enforcement of the regulations. As of 1 July 2020, enforcement will be carried out by means of automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) to check vehicles for compliance with the substantive requirements on initial registration date or fitted particulate filter.
Act amending the Environmental Protection Act and the Act on Sund og Bælt Holding A/S (digital enforcement of low-emission zones)
The purpose of the bill is to tighten enforcement in low-emission zones by introducing automated checks based on digitally reading number plates. The bill is a follow-up to the previously notified bill 2018/607/DK, which tightened the Danish rules on low-emission zones.
With the elimination of the physical EcoSticker labels on windscreens, it is proposed that checks going forward shall be based on digitally reading number plates in conjunction with information in the national vehicle register (the so-called DMR).
The bill proposes to assign Sund & Bælt Holding A/S the task of digitally reading number plates for the enforcement of low-emission zones. Sund & Bælt Holding A/S is proposed because through its operation of the fixed links over the Great Belt and Oresund amongst others, it has gained competences in relation to the charging and collection of tolls and the performance of checks for enforcement thereof.
At the same time, it is proposed that Sund & Bælt Holding A/S be authorised to automatically register number plates, retrieve information from national vehicle registers, and build vehicle databases in association with the company’s tasks relating to the low-emission zone scheme.
Additionally, in order to ensure a targeted solution to the task, it is proposed that the Danish Environmental Protection Agency have some enforcement responsibilities, including the ability to issue administrative fine notifications. A legal basis is introduced upon which in the first three months after 1 July 2020, warnings are to be issued instead of fine notifications for vehicles observed without particulate filters in the low-emission zones.
In addition, an exemption is introduced for Euro 5 lorries and buses that meet the Euro 5 standard in relation to step 1. The exemption also applies to enhanced environmentally friendly vehicles (EEVs). Such vehicles are thus included two years later than hitherto.
Foreign vehicles that do not meet the requirement concerning initial registration date are to register either that they meet the Euro 5 standard (until 1 July 2022) or that the vehicle is fitted with a particulate filter. Such vehicles are to be registered online, which can be done for up to 24 hours after they have driven into a low-emission zone. Registration is to include a registration certificate, and if it lacks a Euro standard, then it is to include a Euronorm certificate or certificate of fitted particulate filter.