On the face of it, the revelation that 500,000 VW cars in the United States were designed to cheat on diesel emissions testing doesn’t seem like good news for air quality. And, sadly, it seems VW was not the only culprit – a new study by Transport and Environment shows that nearly every European automaker has cheated on the diesel emission requirements.
But since 2015, when Volkswagen admitted to using a “defeat device” to circumvent US emissions regulations, a remarkable series of events has rapidly pushed electric vehicle (EV) technology to the fore in Europe. In fact, what has become known as “Dieselgate” may end up being a turning point globally in combatting both toxic and greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles.
Europeans drive a lot of diesel cars. About 50% of cars on the road there are diesel. In the United States, that number is about 3% – almost all of which are European. Why the disparity?