German government and VW head denounce diesel fume tests on monkeys and humans
Testing the effect of exhaust fumes on monkeys and even people cannot be ethically justified , Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesperson Steffen Seibert said at a press conference on Monday. The public outcry against the tests which exposed monkeys and humans to diesel fumes and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and were conducted by VW, Daimler and BMW was absolutely understandable, Seibert said. Seibert also said that the general objective of the tests was critical: “The automobile industry has to reduce toxic emissions […], they have to adhere to thresholds and they must not try to prove an alleged harmlessness of exhaust fumes.”
VW head Michael Müller said the tests carried out in the US by the EUGT, an institute that his company funded together with competitors BMW and Daimler, were “wrong and abhorrent”, Spiegel Online reports in a separate article. “I am sorry that Volkswagen was implicated in these events as a financier of the EUGT,” Müller said, pledging that “necessary consequences” were to follow.
In a further article by news agency Reuters, Volkmar Denner, head of car industry supplier Bosch, says the tests on animals would foil attempts to save the image of diesel technology. The revelations could mean a “severe setback” for the industry and further erode public trust in the companies, Denner warned. Bosch was a co-founder of the EUGT but backed out in 2013, the year before the tests were carried out, Reuters says.
See CLEW’s dieselgate timeline for more information.