Traffic problems and...

Traffic problems and environmental problems

The Government's main strategy to solve global and regional environmental problems will be to adopt general and not sectoral instruments. Where appropriate, the Government intends to use economic instruments.

Instruments specific to particular sectors, like imposing exhaust emission limits or requiring waste deposit facilities for ships, will be used where direct taxation, for instance, is not appropriate.

In the Government's opinion, local environmental problems are best tackled by using instruments adapted to local conditions. Examples of instruments which could be applicable to local environmental problems are investments in the infrastructure, or a variety of financial instruments like toll road charges varied according to the time of day, parking fees, or road pricing. Road pricing will be discussed in more detail in the road and road traffic plan (NVVP) for 1998-2007. In many cases, more selective measures like speed limits, screening from noise, and various forms of regulation should prove suitable.

In connection with NVVP 1998-2007, the Government will give closer consideration to central government rules as they relate to current limitations on the use of local instruments; cf. the Report of the committee appointed to evaluate environmental policy instruments, Norwegian Official Reports (NOU) 1995:4). The Government has decided to allow toll charges for entry into city centres to be differentiated according to the time of day, and assumes that local authorities will consider the possibility of adopting this instrument to abate the congestion and pollution problems that arise at certain times.

The Government will consider how municipal parking regulation, including the regulation of private parking facilities, can be used as an instrument of environmental and transport policy.

The Government is working on the establishment of trial schemes for heavy transport networks in some of the larger urban areas.
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