When will motorcycle emissions be put under control?

The government has decided to lift the standards for automobile emission standards, but motorcycles, which produce 80 percent of total emissions from motor vehicles, are still not under control.

In 2010, the-then PM approved a plan on motorcycle emission control submitted by the Ministry of Transport (MOT). Under the plan, 80-90 percent of motorbikes in Hanoi and HCMC, and 60 percent of motorbikes in first- and second-class cities, must meet the required emissions standards by 2015.

When will motorcycle emissions be put under control?

However, agencies still have not set a roadmap to implement the plan.

Meanwhile, large cities like Hanoi and HCMC, impatient about the sharp rise in number of motorbikes in their localities, have urged MOT to issue a legal document on examining motorbike emissions.

If the ministry cannot issue such a document soon, it needs to give guidance so that cities can set rules in their localities in a pilot program.

Motorbikes are the biggest source of emissions among motor vehicles and the major reason behind traffic jams in HCMC and Hanoi. 

In October 2017, in a document to the Hanoi People’s Committee, Deputy PM Trinh Dinh Dung instructed MOT to continue working on the regulations on applying emissions standards for motorcycles when amending the Road Traffic Law. The study will give necessary information to set up a roadmap for motorcycle emission control to be applied throughout the country.

Do Ngoc Hai from the HCMC Transport Department said the department, after consulting with the environment department, has drawn up a plan on controlling motorcycle emissions and collecting pollution fees in the city.

If the plan is approved, it would be implemented in 2019. However, with Dung’s instruction, the city has had to postpone the plan and wait for the law to be amended.

A report found that by March 1, 2018, HCMC had 7.5 million motorcycles.


Environmental management agencies in the city reported that circulating motorbikes emit 94 percent of hydrogen carbon, 87 percent of carbon, and 57 percent of nitrous oxide of the total emissions of motor vehicles.

With the number of motorbikes increasing by 10-15 percent per annum and the currently applied EURO 2 emission standards, the volume of emissions will be increasing dramatically.

Motorbikes are the biggest source of emissions among motor vehicles and the major reason behind traffic jams in HCMC and Hanoi.

However, most of the policies related to motorbike emissions control suggested by management agencies in recent years met strong opposition from the public and failed.

Pham Xuan Mai from the HCMC University of Science & Technology said low income earners would face a financial burden if strict emission standards are set.


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Thien Nhien

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