The 2-page handout

The reading

Germany may put a speed limit on its world famous autobahn network of highways. The autobahn has a total length of about 12,996 kilometers. There is no speed limit on it for many types of vehicles. However, there are limits in some built-up areas, spots that are accident-prone, or roads that are under construction or undergoing repairs. On the parts of the network on which there is no limit, there is an advisory speed limit of 130 kilometers per hour (80 mph). Germany's government may now put a speed limit on all parts of the autobahn. This is because Germany has to meet fuel emission targets set by the European Union. It wants to reduce the damage done to the environment by cars that drive fast.

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Many drivers in Germany are unhappy with a possible speed limit on the autobahn. They do not want the 130kph limit, even though that is normal in other EU countries. Some politicians say the proposed speed limit will never get passed in Germany's government. One politician, Ulrich Lange, said: "I don't think the suggestion of a speed limit is practical." One of Germany's best-selling newspapers Bild Zeitung disagreed with the speed limit. It wrote: "Our autobahn roads are a symbol of freedom. 'Tested on German autobahn' is a quality seal. There are enough speed limits." Germany could face big EU fines if it does not reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.



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