|There is a single Low Emission Zone operating in the Ruhr area, covering 820 km², covering the towns of: Bochum, Bottrop,
Castrop-Rauxel, Dortmund, Duisburg, Essen, Gelsenkirchen,
Herne, Herten, Mühlheim, Oberhausen, and Recklinghausen.
There are also other separate LEZs in Nordrhein-Westfalen. Please see further information on an Ruhr LEZ as well as for each city separately (see each city under the left hand menu).
In the Ruhr there are recommended lorry routes.
Dates and Standards
* From January 2013
- Diesel Euro 3(PM), Petrol Euro 1 / Yellow Sticker
* From July 2014
- Diesel Euro 4(PM), Euro 5(PM), Euro 6(PM) and Petrol Euro 1 / Green Sticker
All diesel vehicles, and petrol vehicles without a closed loop catalytic converter (Euro 1 or equivalent).
All vehicles must have a sticker - see National Scheme
What is the LEZ boundary
key: green shaded areas are LEZ (The top left is part of Gelsenkirchen)
There is an overview and map of all current 13 LEZ in the Ruhr, here
From January 2012 there is a single Rhur LEZ:
Key: Green area=LEZ, grey lines = exempted motorways, blue area=air quality management area
LEZ Road sign
Need to Register? National
A sticker must be bought before driving into the zone and displayed in the windscreen - see National Scheme. This sticker is then valid for all LEZs in Germany.
Proof of emissions standard (given on German vehicle papers) is needed to purchase the sticker. Germany also accepts the stickers from Czech Republic.
Buying German LEZ stickers
Stickers for German and foreign vehicles can be purchased from the vehicle registration, authorities, authorised local garages, vehicle test organisations like TÜV, DEKRA, or some websites.
LEZ city authorities and other cities also sell stickers, often over the internet or in person, see Buying German LEZ stickers from Berlin city, also in English or German (cost 6€).
Many hotels in LEZ cities also offer to order the stickers on behalf of their guests, if they receive the needed documents in advance.
German LEZ stickers can be purchased online for all vehicles in all countries for 9.90€ (if the vehicle registered in Germany) and for 17.50€ (if the vehicle is not registered in Germany), also in different languages.
Foreign vehicles are also enforced and are required to buy a sticker. Foreign vehicles emissions are taken primarily by vehicle age, as show in in this table
German vehicles need to have a particulate trap certified on behalf of the German government. Local garages can advise on which filters should be used and this page. allows you to find out what particulate filter your German registered vehicle can use - now for heavy as well as light duty vehicles. See also our retrofitting section.
Hours of operation
Permanent, 365 days a year.
Manual enforcement by police of sticker in the windscreen. Even if the vehicle meets the emissions standard, if there is no sticker in the windscreen, the vehicle is illegal in the zone.
The penalty for driving or parking your vehicle without valid sticker is 80€
A National Framework sets out the Emissions Classes and main rules that can be used by cities for LEZs in Germany. The cities or regions then decide whether, where and when to do a LEZ, and what emissions standards will be required.
Windscreen stickers (plakette) show the vehicle Euro standard. To enter the LEZ, the vehicle must have the sticker required by the LEZ standard (usually Green Sticker). See below for the different windscreen stickers.
View National Scheme Table (opens in popup) or in a new page
Stickers similar to those used in Germany, and mutually accepted, exist also in the Czech Republic.
Additional local Exemptions
Local name for an LEZ
Suggested Lorry Routes Municipalities in the Ruhr area
Essen city website