The Car Manufacturing Giant, Volkswagen, Admitted

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The Issue: The car manufacturing giant, Volkswagen, admitted to cheating on the emission tests of diesel cars to fall within the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards. The Concern: Although initial fraud was discovered in the U.S., the larger extent of Volkswagen’s emissions deception affects approximately 11 million cars world wide, producing significantly more air pollution than previously estimated. The concern also arises that throughout the auto industry; potential other companies could be involved in similar scandals. The Causes: Volkswagen installed computer software into their diesel engines that could detect when the car was undergoing emissions testing. The car would then switch into a more efficient mode, cutting air-fuel ratios and exhaust flows, and injecting a solution to make the emissions harmless, in order to be able to pass the strict U.S emission’s standards. However, when the car was not being tested, i.e. operating under real world situations, the software would shut down the emission controls which would increase the gas mileage making the car seem more fuel efficient. The EPA refers to technology that interferes with the emissions tests as “defeat devices.” It is believed that VW started implementing these devices in 2008 because the engines they had then developed at great cost to the company would not meet regulations. Political Implications: To sell cars in the United States, car manufactures must prove they are in compliance with the

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