Due to the high pollution levels in German inner cities, numerous German states and cities are being sued by residents and environmental organizations before the administrative courts to take appropriate measures to reduce immission.
Dr. Wolfram Sandner, Partner at Heuking Kühn Lüer Wotjek’s Stuttgart office and specializing in environmental and planning law, has represented the state of Baden-Württemberg in such litigation since 2005.
Currently, the lawsuits are dealing with overly high concentrations of nitrogen dioxide in the inner city of Stuttgart, caused primarily by diesel vehicles, which do not comply with the newest Euro 6 emissions standard. With a population of some 600,000, Stuttgart has more than 230,000 commuters daily; 120,000 vehicles are counted on an average workday at the most heavily traveled traffic junction (B14/Neckartor). This high-profile litigation raises a large number of legal questions, for example, with regard to the option of imposing a driving ban or other traffic restrictions specifically against diesel vehicles.