EPA Finds Opportunity in Volkswagen Scandal
Mandates are going to get worse for everybody.
How long has this policy been sitting in the wings, waiting for the opportune moment? In response of the revelations that Volkswagen cheated on its emission tests, the Environmental Protection Agency announced that it will change the way it tests the emissions of vehicles. The EPA will now test vehicles as they drive the roads, in addition to lab testing. For seven years, Volkswagen installed software in its diesel cars that sensed when a vehicle was hooked up to a test. That changed when the cars hit the road, where the cars started emitting many times the legal emission limits for gasses like nitrogen oxide in the name of fuel economy. And for violating an unconstitutional regulation, Volkswagen will pay — possibly to the tune of $18 billion. “When there is this kind of deception, we’ve got to get these agencies to be able to cut through it and catch it,” said Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL). In the name of catching companies that decide to cheat the government, the EPA will pry further into the automobile industry, bringing more regulation in the name of clean air. (Because this is evidently a far worse crime than killing people, like Government Motors and Toyota did.) No doubt the EPA will decide to impose more regulation and more control because of climate change, too. A crisis has come, and the EPA is going to take this as a mandate to make the quality of vehicles worse for everybody.