Life Motoring

Sunday 21 April 2019

Man who exposed 'Dieselgate': New test is step in right direction to cut emissions

John German
John German
Eddie Cunningham

Eddie Cunningham

The man who exposed 'Dieselgate' has told Independent Motors he hopes new tests will help cut emissions in Europe but believes we are still far more lax in enforcing regulations than the US.

John German (pictured), who with Peter Mock uncovered the VW emission cheating saga, says there's some way to go on enforcement and on getting real-world driving tests to accurately reflect the true impact of diesel engines.

He cited test results from last year that claimed only 10pc of then Euro6 cars met emission limits under real-world driving conditions.

The study, by independent research organisation International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT), with whom Mr German is senior fellow/regional co-lead, compiled the results for 541 Euro5 and Euro6 diesel passenger cars.

It found that for Euro6 vehicles, the average real-world level of health-threatening nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions was 4.5 times the Euro6 limit. Only 10pc of Euro6 cars outperformed the standard; the rest exceeded it by up to 12 times.

Mr German says new, more realistic tests are a big improvement and will help reduce harmful emissions.

However, he warns the tests only extend the conditions under which diesels are deemed 'clean' compared with the old system.

The ICCT, FIA Foundation, Global NCAP, Transport & Environment and C40 Cities are trying to establish remote sensing monitoring campaigns to get real-world emissions of all vehicles and establish a ranking system.

This data could be used as a screening tool for further enforcement and evaluating the effectiveness of real-driving emissions.

Meanwhile a relatively recent briefing paper compares the modifications required by US and EU authorities. It claims the data continues to support earlier findings that enforcement in the US is more effective and stringent than Europe.

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