Our environment has been the first victim of humans’ actions since the industrial revolution in UK in 1800’s. The realization from scientists to the environmental violations by humans motivated the calls for actions and eventually managed to enforce environmental regulations on nations to save environment. Cars emit greenhouse pollutants and carbon monoxide, nitric oxides, and other particulates from fuel combustions that are unhealthy to the environment and therefore rules have been enforced to reduce them as well. In September 2015, it was found out that Volkswagen has been violating the emissions rates allowed since 2009 by deception laboratories through programming an emission control to be activated only in laboratories test but not in streets driving.
This excess of NOx emissions has affected human’s health in US and Europe as a result and multiple financial sanctions on the company has been applied and alternative environmental solutions were provided.
In September 2015, The Emission gate also more commonly referred to as The Volkswagen Scandal came to the public when the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a notice of violation of the Clean Air Act to Volkswagen Group of Germany.
The EPA had discovered that the German giant had programmed it’s Turbocharged Direct Injection (TDI) diesel engines to be under emissions control during laboratory emission test by meaning that when tested in laboratories the Volkswagen motors are below the NOx output maximum limit allowed in the US. However, in real life the NOx were up to 40 times higher
In terms of economy, Diesel engine can go more miles per gallon compared to petrol engines and this is since they burn fuel at higher temperature. This results in a higher production of Nitrogen Oxide compared to their counterparts of Petrol engines. However, they need to have air and fuel filters changed frequently as well as they are costly to produce. The VW system had in their engines a trap to Nitrogen Oxide. However, more fuel was needed to trap Nitrogen Oxide and this was only activated during the laboratory testing as the software programmed it that way and hence the explanation of the scandal.
A California state Judge Charles Breyer, has offered a planned supported by US government and several environmental agencies to seal down the case by giving the options to owners of Volkswagen tow (2) liter diesel cars to either fix their engines according to US emission standards or sell back the cars to VW with loan cancellation in case if the car is still on loans. The judge as well proposed considerable compensation and remediation hardship for any environmental harms caused by VW. 9 In the settlement, a 2.7 BN$ will be paid for environmental mitigation and $2 billion to promote zero-emissions vehicles and $603 million for claims by 44 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. The total settlements for all courts and customer repayments are estimated to be 15 BN$.