New Eco-tax Results in Protests

Traffic ground to a halt outside of several major cities on Saturday. Photo: House of Hall for flickr.

Traffic ground to a halt outside of several major cities on Saturday. Photo: House of Hall for flickr.

Traffic ground to a halt the morning of Saturday, November 16 on several French highways as road-freight organizations protested against the new eco-tax. Over 300 trucks blocked traffic, surrounding the food market giant Rungis just outside Paris.

Protest traffic jams also formed south of Lyon, as well as near Toulouse, Bordeaux, and Lille. The protests were set up by the OTRE, an umbrella organization of small vehicle transport companies. Participants claimed that the tax, which would average out to 14 cm/km, would run many of these small transport companies into bankruptcy or straight out of business.

First introduced by the Sarkozy administration, the eco-tax — which was legalized and then halted last month — was to raise 1.15 billion euros. A full 20% of the revenues would have gone to the company operating the tax, while the remainder would be utilized for the development of eco-friendly infrastructure and transport.

Protests — primarily in Brittany — led the French government to delay the tax’s installation.

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  1. […] Traffic ground to a halt the morning of Saturday, November 16 on several French highways as road-freight organizations protested against the new eco-tax. Over 300 trucks blocked traffic, surrounding the food market giant Rungis just outside Paris. Read more about the anti-ecotax demonstration. […]

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