The debate about reducing the speed limit on motorways from 130 to 100 km/h is entering the next round: The traffic engineer Gerhard Kronreif, who has been criticized by the state, is now being supported by pollutant experts from the Federal Environment Agency and ÖAMTC.
Kronreif had previously described the pollutant savings forecast by the Austrian Traffic Club (VCÖ) as unrealistic and pointed out that 23 percent less pollutant emissions and less fuel consumption would not be possible by driving at 100 km/h instead of 130 km/h on the motorway. Kronreif calculated that a maximum of three percent CO2 can be saved.
Crown Circlet: Three calculations yield similar results
For his calculation, the traffic engineer created criticism from the state of Salzburg – the state’s immission control department intervened and emphasized that Kronreif’s measurement data from the Tauernautobahn in Salzburg with flexible speed limits are unsuitable for drawing conclusions for the whole of Austria.
Now, however, calculations by the ÖAMTC and the Federal Environment Agency Kronreif would also prove right and prove that 23 percent reduction in pollutants through 100 km/h is not technically possible, says vehicle and traffic engineer Gerhard Kronreif: “Three organizations achieve a comparable result here, and a maximum one at that Saving of three percent CO2 at a speed limit of 100 km/h. This also takes into account that 130 km/h is no longer permitted on many sections of the motorway.”
Potential savings: “The entire road network is taken into account”
The entire Austrian road network was taken into account for the savings assessment and not just the section of the Tauernautobahn in Salzburg, as criticized by the state. Kronreif emphasized that it was important not to repeat the mistakes from the 80 km/h debate in Salzburg in the technical analysis: “Here, the speed limit of 80 km/h was based on completely erroneous data.” actual pollutant savings are still far below the originally promised values, says traffic engineer Gerhard Kronreif.