As part of the settlement between Volkswagen and the US authorities over the diesel scandal, the automaker is in talks to establish two remediation funds, Bloomberg reports.
Six months have passed since Volkswagen admitted it cheated on the diesel emissions tests and the talks between the automaker and the US authorities over a fix for almost 600,000 affected cars are still without a proper result. However, there were some debates around the subject, questioning if this direction – the one of mending the cars – is the right one to focus on from the environmental point of view. In an open letter sent in December to the California Air Resources Board, some “green” leaders and Silicon Valley executives – including Tesla’s CEO – said forcing VW to technical address the diesel issue was not in any way efficient, as some cars may be fixed, but many won’t and this will not bring any benefits for the environment. The solution they proposed was to release VW from its obligation to fix diesel cars already on the road in California, which represent an insignificant portion of total vehicles emissions in the State and, instead, direct VW to significantly accelerate its rollout of zero emission vehicles or to make it pay so the state could use funds to promote cleaner cars.
And it seems US is finally going on this path as well, as sources told Bloomberg that Volkswagen is in talks with authorities to setup a national remediation fund and a separate one for California to compensate the impact of its cheating scheme. One fund would be administered by the Environmental Protection Agency and used to push for cleaner transportation solutions throughout the country, while the other would be run by California to promote zero-emission vehicles in the state, the people said.
As for the fix, even Todd Sax, chief of the California Air Resources Board enforcement division, does not believe that all VW cars fitted with the bypass device can fully comply with emission laws no matter how the fix looks like. “Our goal has been to fix the vehicles and return them to their certified configuration as expeditiously as possible,” he stated last week. “Unfortunately, this may not be possible.”