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Dieselgate Committee: preventing a new emissions scandal
The Dieselgate Committee of the European Parliament has approved a series of recommendations to prevent a new emissions scandal. “A year and a half after the outbreak of Dieselgate, it is clear that this scandal for public health could and should have been avoided,” says MEP Mark Demesmaeker, vice-president of the research committee. “The large discrepancies between the emissions of cars in the lab and on the road were known and there were also clear indications of possible fraud. However, no action was taken to tackle the structural problem decisively. On the contrary, the introduction of effective practical tests was significantly delayed. Irresponsible Member States and a negligent European Commission shoved public health aside. And this despite poor air quality making citizens dangerously ill.”
“It is incomprehensible and unacceptable that some Member States and the automotive sector even now continue to stall. Their delaying tactics have got to stop,” says Mark Demesmaeker. “That’s why we are proposing tighter market supervision, with a clear European dimension in which cars can also be re-tested. I believe that this is best done by an independent European Agency. In addition, we want a single Commissioner who is tasked both with air quality and with an emissions policy. This is intended to provide more consistency and prevent people from passing responsibilities off onto one another or even actively working against each other.”
Tests in real driving circumstances
The research committee’s results point to the fact that all the technology needed for achieving the proposed nitrogen standards is already currently available: “And that means in real driving conditions and without a negative impact on CO2 emissions,” Mark Demesmaeker points out. The investigation committee is therefore asking for tests in real driving conditions to be put into practice very soon. The easing of the nitrogen standard must be reviewed annually and be reversed as soon as possible. Moreover, consumers must be given clearer information about the actual emissions of their vehicle.