Colombian capital observes first car-free day

Bogota, Feb 5 (IANS) Residents in the Colombian capital of Bogota travelled by cycles or public transportation during its first car-free day to promote a low-carbon lifestyle, the media reported on Friday.

The measure banning the use of private vehicles on Thursday starting from 5.00 a.m. to 7.30 p.m., was initiated by the city’s mayor Enrique Penalosa, Xinhua news agency reported.

According to Bogota’s environment department, the measure aims to reduce air pollution because there are 3 million vehicles on the streets everyday in the capital city.

Authorities said private cars and trucks are responsible for about 65 percent of carbon dioxide emissions in Bogota, motorcycles for about 12 percent, but public transportation only accounts for 8 percent.

The local bus company TransMilenio announced that it deployed 1,940 large-sized buses for special lanes, while other 6,799 were deployed in the neighbourhoods of the capital as a back-up.

There is currently no metro system in the city.

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