MADRID – If you were just planning to buy an environmental sticker from the Spanish traffic service DGT, then you’re out of luck: they’re gone. This was announced by the Spanish post ‘Correos‘ on Monday.
The eco sticker is necessary to circulate without problems through the new low-emission zones in Spain. The sticker may also – depending on the type of car you drive or the year of manufacture – prohibit circulation through these new areas. During the course of 2023, all cities in Spain with a population of more than 50,000 must develop low-emission zones.
You can buy the DGT Environmental Sticker (El Distintivo Ambiental DGT) in Spanish post offices and via the website. At least that was possible. However, the website now says ‘agotado’ (out of stock).
Until now, Correos had another “important” message for those interested in obtaining an environmental sticker: “Due to the high demand, orders for this product may be delayed. We thank you for your patience”. This text can still be read on the website.
Easy online purchase process
The online purchase process of the Spanish environmental sticker was very simple. The buyer only had to send an image of their registration certificate and identity document. The post office then sent the badge to the desired address for €5.
A fine without sticker
The DGT environmental labels are “sold out” via the Correos website. Therefore, other alternatives will have to be sought while all the remaining cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants are finalising their processes for setting up a low-emission zone. Meanwhile, drivers who take their vehicles into low-emission zones without a DGT sticker will be fined.
Stickers may be available in physical post offices
It seems the stock is only running out at Correos online. However, it is not clear whether environmental stickers are still available at the physical post offices. Alternatively, the sticker can be purchased for €5 at Tráfico (DGT) offices in each province. Furthermore, they are also available from the network of authorised workshops of the Spanish Confederation of Workshops (CETRAA) and the Institute of Automotive Studies (IDEAUTO). And in the case of fleets, the stickers can be obtained through the association Ganvam.
Risk of inequality
Of all cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants in Spain, only a handful have the ‘Zonas de Baja Emision’ (ZBE) set up. However, several city governments have expressed difficulties in its application. Some experts warn of the risk of inequality if only less polluting vehicles are privileged and regret that citizens are paying for sanctions and bans.
Few cities have low-emission zones in order
In the Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands, ZBEs are compulsory regardless of the number of inhabitants. Furthermore, 149 municipalities in Spain are obliged to have a low-emission zone. Although most already have a project. However, an investigation by El País at the end of October found that it was already in force in only nine of those cities. These cities are asa follows:
- L’Hospitalet de Llobregat
- Sant Cugat del Vallès
- Cornellà of Llobregat
According to this article in RTVE the following cities have more recently developed their low-emission zones also;
- Ciudad Real
- San Cristóbal de La Laguna (Sta. Cruz de Tenerife)
- Sant Adrià de Besòs
- Esplugues de Llobregat
- Sant Joan Despí
- The Madrid municipalities of Coslada, Fuenlabrada Alcobendas
However, that means that still 40% of places have already missed the deadline.