How did this program start in the Valley of Mexico? It has worked? » Newspade

Currently, a good part of the inhabitants of the Metropolitan Zone of the Valley of Mexico (ZMVM) —City and some municipalities of the State— are used to rest their vehicles one day a weekwhich forces them to stay at home or, failing that, change your routine and use public transportation or carpool with a partner.

This situation, which today is part of the daily life of the capital and some mexiquensesis part of the objectives of the program Today does not circulatewhich originally sought to reduce circulation to mitigate the impact of pollutants on the environment.

But where did this program come from? Above all, to more than 30 years of its implementation, has it been effective? In La Razón we tell you about the circulation calendar known to all the inhabitants of the ZMVM.

Today does not circulate. How did this program come about?

At the end of the 1980s, the Mexican authorities estimated that Mexico’s polluting footprint was growing at a worrying rate. At that time, terms related to caring for the environment were placed on the public agenda, such as “thermal inversion” and “ozone” or “suspended particles”.

Thus, at the same time of units of pollution measurement such as the “imecas” (Metropolitan Air Quality Index), the federal governments and the then Federal District (headed by Carlos Salinas de Gortari and Manuel Camacho Solís, respectively) began to implement specific measures to mitigate the impact of pollutants.

In this way, arose the Automatic Atmospheric Monitoring Networkrenewal of road engines and transport vehicle fleet, implementation of magna gasoline, extension of vacation periods, extensions of the capital Metro and, of course, the Hoy No Circula.

Actually, when the program was first implemented, in 1989bore the name of “Improve your city” and it was temporary, as well as voluntary. It consisted of motorists registering with it in order to stop using your car one dayfor which they were identified with a stamp.

According to government data, it was possible to gather 400 thousand peoplehowever, its true impact was achieved when, a year later, it was made mandatory and its name was changed to “Hoy No Circula”where it acquired the regulation that prevails until today.

Today does not circulate. How does the program work?

In this way, the Hoy No Circula program has remained until the current decade with few changes —among them, changing the guidelines to grant exceptions.

Thus, the general regulation of Hoy No Circula dictates that cars must be taken to verificationin order to receive a sticker, which, together with the last digits of the license plate, dictates what days should its use be rested.

No Circulation Today, has it worked?

exist contrary positions around the true effectiveness that the Hoy No Circula program has had over the years more than 30 years that has been implemented in the ZMVM.

A study of Molina Centerpublished in 2014, estimated that the program it does achieve a reduction of between 25 and 70 percent of pollutant emissionsin addition to promoting the renewal of the vehicle fleet and encouraging the use of other forms of mobility in environmental contingencies.

On the contrary, a study published by the magazine ‘Science’ of the Mexican Academy of Sciences years before, in 2009, he highlighted that, in reality, the contribution was negligible: “an analysis of the available information casts doubt on this interpretation [de las reducciones] and can even be considered the results are very poor compared to the costs incurred”, reads the analysis.

However, the program has become fundamental part of road culture of the Metropolitan Area and, even, its application to other entities of the Republic has been considered.

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