tv Politics and Public Policy Today CSPAN October 8, 2015 9:00am-10:01am EDT
madam commissioner. i agree with my colleagues from both committees. the question to the commission but let me add the manipulations and danger, the general reputation of new carmakers and the whole european industry. in each which always defends european industry i want to say that what happened is completely unacceptable. we expect a full investigation and full accountability of those who are responsible. it happens while we are negotiating very sensitive issue with our relations with the usa, for our relations. but the case shows that we should not lower our environmental standards. america shares our standards and perhaps even more advanced in
scrutinizing them. already two years ago that testing must be improved and harmonized together with misleading information on fuel consumption and environmental performance which is very important. the issue has not yet been solved. so the european commission and member states must also investigate if the case concerns just one manufacturer or whether we might be facing a much broader problem. the decisions we like to talk about with standard but what are they worth? they can be cost effective and enforced and controlled, they are not worth very much. thank you very much. >> translator: thank you.
you have the floor. >> translator: madam president, ladies and gentlemen, the transport committee, too, is affected by this scandal because we know that without a change in mobility we will not be able to stop climate change. 24%, that's what transport accounts for and, in fact, if you look at road transport, it's 72%. and that's bad enough. but since 1990 in industry we've seen a decrease of 2%. but in transport we're talking about an increase to the tune of 28%. so, in other words, transport is gobbling up everything that we're spending elsewhere with our budgetary resources and without a change we will not be able to stop climate change. we have to stop climate change for the sake of our children, for the sake of our grandchildren if they want to still live on this planet, and that is the reason why in the white paper of 2011 where the broad ma jajority here in this parliament made a decision when it comes to urban transport, 50%
of conventional fuel would be reduced and by 2050 we would have no conventional fuels at all used in our cities. now we decided that would be our target and we would achieve this target through greater efficiency, new engines, new fuels as well, and also new combustion levels, and that is what we decided but, of course, you can't do that through cheating. you can't do that through criminal activities, and that is something we really must speak out against very strongly indeed. now this wasn't a technical short coming. it was a financial deficit. this is why volkswagen took this decision, they decided to cheat rather than being honest. if they'd been honest the car would have been a little bit more expensive. and, unfortunately, the technical availabilities were there but they were not used in this case. here in the eu we have targets in the field of transport up until 2050, ambitious targets set by the commission and we, too, have supported those
ambitious targets here in this parliament but it didn't really go far enough. we talked about a third step, a second step, a third step. we needed three steps in succession, in other words. that's why we decided to look at 2020 and we looked at levels from 1990, co2 emissions we want ed to cut by 20% between then and 2020. a broad majority supported that decision. and now we have, of course, new white paper from mr. vanderkamp. we have supported his position. the testing needs to be revisited, to be more in tune with reality. there's no point in having the best values in a laboratory environment if that has nothing to do with what happens on the roads. and we, of course, have to gauge things according to how they pan out on the road. so that's the question to the commission. the commission needs to analyze this, now why is it that since 2008 we've had this manipulation? why is it nobody noticed this before? you need to analyze that,
analyze the mistakes made by the commission itself. what kind of mistakes made by the member states and authorities, what mistakes did they make? all of this needs to be investigated and, of course, we want to make sure that we have a full and open investigation in the automobile industry and elsewhere, too. it needs to be open and transparent. we cannot have a reputation of this. that's why we want proposals and we expect proposals from the commission. once you've had time to process all of this, i'd like to know what your proposal is for the future, how can we make sure this kind of disaster, this kind of criminal activity is not repeated in the future. this was a way of cheating customers in terms of the fuel being consumed. you thought you were consuming this much, you were consuming much more. this is bad for cars and taxation is calculated according to co2 emissions. we've been in favor of that but what if this is wrong? you can't turn it around. for the environment, the environment has been hard hit by this and we can't afford to damage the environment in this
way. so, again, it's criminal activity. we have now taken cognizance of that and we feared it might be happening in other sectors, too. we don't -- we don't want that to be loopholes. loopholes should be closed. they should not be able to use them anymore. there are legal loopholes that we use in order to bring down emission levels being declared. we need to investigate all of that. we need to be thorough and to make sure this does not happen again in the future. thank you. >> madam? >> thank you very much, indeed. you have the floor on behalf of the commission. >> madam president, thank you very much. i'm grateful for having the opportunity to have this agenda and to really explain to you the actions of the european commission for the last ten days. because we really face a very difficult case of fraud, let me call it, very frankly, a fraud
of one company, and this fraud has put at stake the credibility of our legal system and its efficiency for protecting consumers and the environment. and these are the back bones of european union actions and regulations. i believe we'll be able to overcome it. i thank the european parliament for giving me this opportunity to share the information and those at the very beginning i want to continue to provide you with every piece of information of future actions to ensure that this will not happen again. the commission and member states agreed at the council last week on thursday, on the 1st of october, to act quickly and to act collectively. this means three points. one, investigating and establishing the facts and enforcing existing rules, what
all of you call for. then, the second point, accelerating adoption of the regulatory framework for emissions, and, third, changing the approval and is your veins system so that this cannot happen again. i will speak about each of these in turn. i want you to know the commission will play a full role in sorting this out. so let me catch up on the first point establishing the facts and enforcing the existing rules. because this is something from which we have to start. we must start by establishing the facts. you asked me how the commission will investigate any potential wrongdoing. the commission does not have the power to carry our own investigation in the auto sector. we rely on the authorities of the member states.
these institutions are professional. let's not jeopardize what we have built together so far. a widespread feeling of mutual suspicion is not helping european action. in fact, investigations have already been allowed in several member states and the commission has encouraged, i sent a letter to all member states, all others to do the same. every member state and every manufacturer. the commission is providing a platform for the exchange of information between member states. in the sense we have already convinced several meetings of the government and authorities. we have discussed this matter, also, as i mentioned before, in detail at the competitiveness council on the 1st of october. they are together exchanging information with the commission about this case. and the commission is also organizing a meeting with the
national approval authorities on the 15th of october. we need to have clarified as soon as possible on the extent of the fraud. for instance, such a question, how many vehicle motors are involved? how many vehicles in total? which conditions have vehicles sales been banned? and once we have the facts, we must act. as i stressed, we have a zero tolerance for fraud. we must send a very clear message today on the enforcement of existing rules. and those rules must be strictly respected. and here again national authorities have a very crucial role to play. we need to be lear clear about what and when we will do, what action will be taken to remedy this situation and when will they be carried out? we need to do as quickly as possible to restore consumer
confidence because i think this is the real damage, and we need to apply the rules even if this implies sanctions. we owe this to the european citizens. i have asked member states to work together on this. because i think coordinated national actions will make things even worse, we will only succeed if we work together. the second point on accelerating the framework of emissions. of course, because the question was whether we noticed that something was wrong. we noticed the system of testing emissions in laboratory is not the right one and the commission proposed draft regulation on the testing a few years ago. the first packet was voted in may but really i think we have to accelerate. the new legislation will improve the test to direct ly assess th regulated emissions of light duty vehicles under real driving
conditions. the new testing process will eliminate the possibility to use the devices and will ensure that their regulatory emissions limits are actually met. the second packet sets out exact timing and level of the so-called conformity and we will do it. and the third point, improving the approval and is your veins system so this cannot happen again. where should we act at eu level? let me list those areas where action is needed really urgently and where the full support also your full support, the full support of the parliament is essential. the existing approval system for motor vehicles lies in the approval of vehicles. this is a system used in almost
the whole world and has been started and evaluated in detail for several years. so far i want to stress so far the conclusion of our studies has been this system has been efficiency to ensure safe and environmentally friendly cars on our roads. it has also ensured that the internal market is fully harmonized and that every time a member state authority approves a vehicle type, it can be bought and registered in 28 member states. and this has also obvious advantage to the citizens and industry. our status conclusion also indicated and also has to be stressed that we can improve the system especially in governorance and market is your veins. we have been working on the last years for the approval system of motor vehicles.
however, in light of the problem and drawing conclusions from what has occurred we will analyze our proposal again and will suggest further changes that will prevent similar events from happening. i hope to present it as soon as possible. the proposal will then be brought to you and the council and we expect our work, our common work will be quick. we expect that the resulting work will contribute to more effective market surveyance, and improve safeguard measures. let me say it again, european customers must be reassured the nonconfirmed products are not circulated on the eu market. we need to ask ourselves what lesson we brought from this behavior.
we have to remind companies that them should respect the letter and spirit of law. because socially and environmentally responsible companies have been one of the biggest assets. i hope we can work together. thank you very much. >> translator: thank you very much, indeed. we move to mrs. garsett. >> translator: thank you very much. the scandal by the american authorities really was like a bolt from the blue. we can learn from this and seek the truth starting with four. it's unacceptable and needs to be sanctioned. volkswagen wanted to cheat
people. it's betrayal of the consumers as well. their health and environment are at stake and all those people who, like me, stand up and defend responsible european industry which creates jobs. and i think this could cast a shadow in the automobile industry and at length will affect the credibility of european industry throughout the world. and across the atlantic as well. that said, we have to prevent this fraud scandal from spreading. it was with diesel engines t. wouldn't be a good idea to predict end of diesel engines. we have clean diesel.
it would be a mistake to condemn diesel and the car industry that uses diesel. madam commissioner, you made certain proposals and of course we are awaiting the test as quickly as possible on the real driving conditions. but i'm also wondering about how realistic environmental legislation is. are we sometimes too ambitious? sometimes when we talk about air quality and health, we need to be ambitious but we need to be pragmatic. let me conclude major industrial companies have to play the game of transparency and respect the rules if people are going to continue to trust them. thank you. thank you very much indeed. >> criminal behavior from any company at all, no matter the size is untolerable in the european union.
not only it breaks the public trust. it also undermines the quality of our european products and it damages the health of our european citizens. as we all know air pollution across the u is already today causing more than 400 premature deaths in a year. the mere fact the epa in the u.s. and not our national approval authorities in the eu discovered the devices is really embarrassing and i do not what i share. a national testing organization and they can choose themselves where they want their models to be tested is not working today. we would like you to have an independent authority. there's a very inconvenient
truth. even the cars that passed the testing in a proper way, let's presume in a proper way, are polluting much more than they should. we advocated the real driving emissions test and we urge you, as you said, to come up by september 2016 -- 2017, excuse me, at the latest. and without any loopholes. and so with the conformity factor of one and not more. colleagues, let me conclude by saying that never waste a serious crisis and it's not about being against or in favor of diesel. we should make a leapfrog from clean diesel into the electric area, and we need to support that. we need to make sure we have a european union that supports, that carmakers can bring solutions instead of problems.
>> translator: thank you. on behalf of the ecl. >> translator: ladies and gentlemen, regarding volkswagen, a lot of correct things have been said today but also some things that aren't quite correct. emission values were indeed manipulated by volkswagen, that's true. it's also been alleged several times that this has something to do with the normal difference between the testing laboratory environment and the road. that's not entirely right. so far we can also say that this is the biggest scandal that we've known since the second world war here in europe. now to say this is typical of the german automobile industry, that would be incorrect. volkswagen is a special case and i want to make that quite clear. if the state is involved in a company, if you have trade union officials and politicians who have a majority on the board and if that majority also decides to
appoint auto kratz at the head of the business and you have politicians getting involved, interfering with the day-to-day running of the corporation, unfortunately, you have a culture that develops where you simply turn a blind eye to things. there's also fear and at the end of the day you have this kind of problem arising. trade union leaders and corporate managers who went on trips with lots of privileges, unfortunately some of them were bought with visits to brussels, that kind of thing. now even without this scandal, i'm afraid volkswagen had problems in terms of restructuring, restructuring that would have been necessary which didn't happen. it was hardly competitive anymore. and now really we're talking about a company that needs to be overhauled altogether. as far as the -- my final comment is concerned i would refer you to the euro which needs to be abolished in my view. >> translator: on behalf of audi now, two minutes. >> 11 million buyers of volkswagen diesel cars have been
cheated of which 8 million in europe. but many more have been exposed to severe air pollution due to the additional emissions of roughly 1 million tons. we still don't know whether this is just the tip of the iceberg but all signs point in that direction. obviously the companies involved are the first to blame. they deliberately manipulated the tests. they should not be rewarded for these illegal actions. have the test up and running within six months. i also expect the commission to change the surveillance system. the turnt national approach apparently is not working. therefore an oversight buddy must be established with the
mens to test cars itself. but there's another very important political question that has to be answered. where the commission and certain member states authorities aware of the cheating? the 2007 regulation explicitly prohibits the use of devices so their existence is known for a decade. several reports including a report from the commission's own reported about unexplainable differences between real emissions on the road and a laboratory test results. then why no investigation into this matter? and i asked the commission here today was the commission aware of the practices by the car industry? is the commission willing to disclose internal documents on this matter including correspondents for certain member states. jrc and the international council on clean transportation.
thank you. >> translator: on behalf of the eu. >> we found this act of volkswagen totally unacceptable and a serious breach against consumers but also against european environmental legislation. 11 million car owners are subject to fraud. largely affected because of this very harmful health effects or excessive air pollution and also the consumers. falsified results in emissions tests have been reported up to 40 times.
volkswagen is the biggest in the eu market with the markets there of around 25% but not the only one. is this the only company which has the same problem, or are there other ones? what is the commission doing with these? are we only checking out for protection of european citizens and consumers however this was in the markets. and how you think also about the top 21 in paris, how it affects and how will the commission advance to emissions test requirements in europe?
>> translator: madam, three minutes. >> translator: environmental protection and consumer policy, things that we've been discuss ing and we've been striving for better, cleaner air, environmental protection and we have been discussing this and got used to the fact that auto industry representatives usually see our rules as an attack on their corporate strategy. despite all the negative things i've had, this was the only surprise in the last few weeks was that a company that is as strong and as powerful as volkswagen, that when there is ambitious test cycles, it takes
criminal steps and systematically for years pulls a wool over authorities eyes. that is something which i really still cannot grasp, not even right here and now. policy that is not acceptable. committing fraud and crime is something i cannot understand. what gave rise to this? well, i'd like to turn rather critically to the commission now but also my own government in germany. i don't know any further sector has tried so testimonycally to play the interests of the major companies and protect them against regulations imposed from brussels.
time and time again we don't only have a climate chancellor and now is speaking out for lower thresholds and on the questions of the test cycles and i think this type of aggressive protection i think pushes the companies where they can act in this criminal way as we've seen happening. so what now? we should accept that things didn't -- weren't as much a bolt as people have said they are. the german government and the commission always aimed at not having the test cycle working. it applies to climate protection
so stop being naive. look at the facts. check them through. what you said to us today is very far removed from what really needs to be done, through our weak action, our weak positions we are threatening jobs in europe. it's not environmental rules that threaten industry. >> translator: do you accept a blue card? do you accept a blue card, madam holmes? >> translator: yes, of course. >> thank you. i listen with interest of many of the things in your speech. in your opinion is the volkswagen scandal one off or do you think from your critical remarks about the german government that perhaps they and/or the commission have maybe
conspired with other companies to break their own rules? do you think this is more widespread than we know? >> translator: well, the criminal action shown by volkswagen, i don't know. i haven't seen it happening for other of the large concerns but i don't know any vehicle concern which doesn't have a problem with these test cycles. i'm not aware of any of them which doesn't need to be checked, and that's why it's so important that we should be talking about a european inspection here. we need european instruments. we can do our job properly in this type of --
>> thank you. >> translator: commissioner, colleagues, we wish to highlight the facts that the consequences of this case which is detrimental to the environment and citizens that these consequences were not just confined to this case but they will systematically spread across the entire european standard and test system and this will undermine the credibility of any type of certificate. what will the next scandal be? who can trust the certificates? there are two solutions. one is either do nothing and recognize the european approval is just a joke and spinned willing citizens of the european union making any legislative past or effort point. the second would be to react, adopting landmark exemplary punishment for those responsible and the brands concerned not just high fines. to make it quite clear to
citizens and to industry that the time of tests is over. we need to review directives to the shortcomings and loopholes in the technical tests. can i remind you that they identified the diesel problem for volkswagen in a dossier which dates back to 2013. reports of violations of legislation of some products, the swedish warned in 2014 with regard to samsung television sets. problems with regard to energy consumption tests. are these the only alarm bells? will the commission do something and act here? thank you. >> thank you very much, madam
president, as far as the case is concerned, i think we need to be blunt. there's been manipulation, teaching, software manipulation. all that have is now known. and we're talking about a large corporation and that was a large corporation that has great responsibility as well. and of course the damages will be sustained by many. i mean, first of all, it will be the consumers who will suffer damages, as we've already heard in the debate today and the staff, the employees will be consumers we have to make sure there's compensation not just a sorry, not just an apology but genuine compensation for the damages sustained. as is very often in life there is a flip side i would refer to and i don't want to embellish things or gloss over anything.
we need to look by cars, by vehicles, and they are not really ever real when it comes to fuel consumption. of course the values given are the ones given in a laboratory environment and we've all been putting up with this. we've tolerated that, but it has an impact on the environment and it has a direct impact on the consumer as well on the wallets of our consumers. the second aspect of the united states of america, we're talking about a u.s. case, of course, because they have a regular review of nitrogen oxide emissions and they always bring down the level every single time. now, of course, when you look at their trucks, we're talking about emissions that are three times higher than for cars. so comparing cars. who stands to benefit from all of this? who benefits from all of this? so far we've had no deaths as a result of this case.
thank you. >> translator: one minute. >> translator: well, the evidence is clear the eu and the german government were aware of volkswagen's dirty policy, and apparently it spreads to other corporations as well. revelation of this scandal didn't come about through transparency but through competitive u.s. monopolies seeking to increase their market shares. so what does that mean in terms of our trade agreement between the eu and the u.s.? we've seen that all of the independent separate aspects of european policy, green investment, et cetera, have one single objective and that is to make profits irrespective of what happens of levels of life in all of our countries. we have a role to act as a
legislator here, and this type of scandal is a way of operating, shows the character of the european union, the systems it serves and monopol s monopolies. there is basically a rotten situation on the economic front and throughout our lives. that's what people can expect of europe. >> translator: we now have individual statements. please stick to the time allotted to you. we have 45 speakers. two minutes. >> translator: thank you very much. the fact that it was the americans rather than us discovering the fact eu companies are not complying with the existing regulation is shameful. we're indicating that member states are not enforcing the eu
law and the european commission doesn't have enough control instruments at hand and yet again we're talking about something that our internal market consumer protection committee has been talking on a number of occasions. my colleague was the report of several years ago where we pointed to that short coming. we need a lot of commitment from the european commission but also from the eu member states in order to rectify this. not so long ago we also dealt with very noxious nitrogen oxide coming from vehicles. this is when i suggested that in a relevant regulation the more power should be given to the european commission, but back then many colleagues were against it. listen to you dear colleagues today, i do hope you have changed your minds now because negotiations are only just beginning so there's a chance.
let us not panic, however. commissioner, i agree we need to really look into the eu market and to see how regulations are complied with. we need to rebuild consumer confidence and to -- confidence among the business people in the sense they're not cheating us and information which is quoted in vehicle specifications and in other equipment may be true to fact. we should restore the confidence to eu and national institutions to see that they truly oversee the eu law. commissioner, we should depart from lab tests in order to measure the actual use of car fumes. it's anyone's secret that cars that need lab test requirements, it's about our citizens' health.
>> translator: mrs. biemkowska, i'm surprised. you seem very relaxed. you seem to have a lot of trust in terms of the type of approval authorities of our different states, competition in europe, this is not how i see it in the single market type approval authorities, those who have the lowest standards are the ones given pride of place. that is not right. and what about a european type approval system with european institution? surely that would be a logical conclusion, the one that you should be drawing. i hope that we will be able to talk about this in connection with a resolution before this plenary chamber. we aim to put this on paper. we know this from the field of medicine as well. approval of medicines, you have european authorities cooperating. you have the u.s. authorities working together with us, and there's information, if information has been provide d o
the u.s. authorities when and why, when were you informed of the scandal? at what point in time and how? et cetera, et cetera. now our colleague made a very important point, the environmental agency that should have been look iing at this. the german authorities, i mean, zero tests were implemented in the right way. you know, what about the joint research center? once again, there's a possibility of testing vehicles, automobiles. did that happen? the european commission, i'm asking you, were any tests carried out and, if so, what happened? thank you. [ applause ] >> translator: president, commissioner, let me remind you that the information that we have at hand show that such
manipulation using defeat devices to change the test results just at the time of the test concern nearly 11 million vehicles by vw but, in fact, it could be much wider than that. and personally i wouldn't be surprised if it concerned other companies as well. now the question arises whether or not it's a result of ambition to reduce emissions in transport and to reduce the carbon emissions in all the sectors of european industry. the largest companies, the richest companies manipulated and cheated during tests, and that is harmful to the health of citizens and to the environment. that is unacceptable because the costs are borne mainly by consumers, and the average citizens pay out of their own pocket for the very ambitious
environmental standards but, also, for our ambition to gain as much as possible from the financial perspective and now it's the users, the citizens, the customers who should know the truth and they should find out what really happened in the case of volkswagen. we need proper investigation, but we also need to draw conclusions to avoid such situations in the future. thank you. >> translator: madam? [ speaking in foreign language ] >> excuse me.
>> translator: is everything okay? can we hear the english interpreting? could you please start -- >> translator: commissioner, ladies and gentlemen, obviously what has happened is not justifiable. however, it is not for us today to pronounce a verdict over the european car industry or to eliminate the sector. no, on the contrary, what we have to do, all of us together, is to renew consumer trust so that all of those who are in the eu or who would like to buy a car have totally accurate information about it. in order to do this and to do so we have to act immediately not only in the european car industry but also us, the institutions, and we also have
to try rationally, calm down provoked by this problem and put down very clear, practical collusion solutions. emissions testing that would at the same time take into account the interest of the car industry and also our consumers because as we see our current rules are objecsolete. that is why i call for the commission to present as soon as possible a finalized proposal of regulating procedures for real driving emissions and also proposals that will include performance limits for these tests. legislation for this area should not leave any room for multiple interpretations or multiple ways of how to carry out. last but not least it is important to pay attention to surveyance mechanism that clearly failed if we find it
very difficult to explain to our citizens that we are capable of defending their rights and their interests. thank you. >> thank you very much. mr. ramsdorf for one minute. >> translator: ladies and gentlemen, first, i'd like to say that this need not have happened. in the czech republic we've had an invention in place for a number of years that eliminates 70% of motor vehicles emissions and that can be applied to any vehicle type regardless of age, so even old vehicles will then comply with the relevant emission norms. but in the european commission, the european commission has tried to -- has not seen this --
i've tried to propose it for several years and to no avail. then there are double standards. how come? had to replace 11 million boxes throughout the world and nothing happened. how come? there was the air bag scandal which killed people. how come? >> it is clear volkswagen has deliberately broken the law -- regulators -- >> i'm sorry. the light's on. it is clear that volkswagen has
deliberately broken the law and deliberately misled both regulators and consumers. it was wrong to do so, and it should rightly face appropriate and proportionate penalties. but we must understand the regulatory environment in which this scandal has emerged. the truth is that legislators were consumed by climate hysteria and carbon phobia and as a result we pushed car owners and the auto industry towards diesel, which was seen as a lower emissions fuel. in fact, its co2 emissions are marginally below those of petrol and is not a pollutant. it is a natural, nontoxic gas which is essential to life on earth. but as we are now realizing, diesel's other emissions are highly toxic and our dash for diesel has done more harm than good. vw is trying to follow the pressure by moving to diesel but found it was unable at the same time to meet emissions targets,
so it decided to cheat. it was wrong to do so but so were we as legislators wrong to impose conflicting and contradictory demands on the industry. i see a parallel here, madam president, with our ill judged rush to promote biofuels before we understood the industry in agriculture and the impact of indirect land use change. by mandating 10% biofuels and then caused damage to investors. it is no part of my job to defend german industry, but nor is this a time for shoddenfreud. the hit could damage all of us especially if many expect other companies are drawn into the scandal. with the prospect of multimillion dollar fines in several countries, recall costs, class actions from owners and so on, it is not inconceivable that vw could fail. that is an outcome which we
should all seek to prevent. >> translator: thank you. i do apologize. i missed your name. 1 1/2 minutes. >> it's always fun to be after him. don't be afraid. just one simple example. the epa in the united states when they were investigating was there no contact at all between washington and brussels, what they were doing, and the staff of you did not know anything? it's really hard to believe. and you have to be more precise on the actions you are taking now because these are way too general remarks. first of all, on the investigation, can you confer that this investigation is not only broader to the other substances like co2 where you
also see a growing gap between the tests and reality. secondly, on european type approval, you said we've done our analysis and now because of this scandal we are going to look at it again. why? where exactly are you going to look again? we need to know. thirdly on the tests, on the new rde tests, can you deny that at this moment the commission is proposing a conformity factor of 1.6 while we are discussing that? this is being discussed in bresles. i hope you can say 1.6 of conformity factors for 2017 is not in the cards. let's see whether where he ambitious, the standard of the eu is 80 milligrams. in the u.s. it's 43. in california 35. who is more ambitious now? [ applause ] >> translator: would you accept a blue card? 30 seconds.
>> translator: thank you very much, madam president. i would like to argue with you, but i also have a question. why do i disagree with you? these are man-made standards. we have to be very careful. if you comply with these standards, you are a good guy. if you don't, you are a bad guy. if you are a car maker and you burn fuel, you are a bad guy no matter what. here is my question. should europe move toward a n - non-petrol-based car or not? >> we impose standards for our safety, for public health. if the car industry with diesel cannot comply with it, then maybe they should not go into deas. that's a discussion we need to have. on the basis of the standards
for our own safety and the standards we agreed upon, this 80 which is not very ambitious, was only done in 2007 already. and then they knew that new tests would be coming. the car industry knows this for eight years. they have not doing anything apart from cheating with the software. that should be addressed. >> translator: two minutes. >> translator: thank you, president. i am a client of volkswagen. i have a turbo diesel which i bought after european standards fought me to get the euro 5 motor because the others were too pollutant. and they had been going through problems for several years. so i had to go to volkswagen. but volkswagen is the first and foremost car manufacturer in the world at the moment. but if mrs. merkel, who commands
the whole globe, i wonder if she shouldn't explain how this works. now there's a problem. merkel gets going to defend volkswagen. can she tell me what's happened? did they know or did she know what was going on? did she or not? i think in the history of eur e europe -- i don't think your t-shirt is apt for this. you've got to bear in mind, you have to be attentive to what you are doing. your t-shirt is not apt for this cycle at all. the speaker has now stopped. >> translator: one minute. >> translator: the volkswagen
scandal is both an economic one and a mental one but also political one. we need to find out the number of cars circulating in the european union with this software. and we're also wondering whether volkswagen was the only company that installed such software and what measures are we to take so that this does not happen again. volkswagen needs to be banished for the deception they have made. but also have to find out despite the fact there are connections between volkswagen and the german government, chancellor merkel is supporting the car industry in germany. but this perhaps might mean that they are also supporting companies that are deceiving the european citizens and the european institutions. they are supporting these companies despite numerous scandals that have been publicized at the same time they are asking for austerity.
it sim possib it is impossible. we need to punish volkswagen as soon as possible. thank you. >> translator: two minutes. >> translator: thank you, president, commissioner, ladies and gentlemen. those responsible, vw wanted to save money. but they were saving money at the cost of the environment. nitrous ochl sixides are one of causes to form ozone in the atmosphere. it leads to worsening of problems. through its mistakes, some of the people there are responsible for that. there is an economic cost to that, which, of course, is outweighed by far the money they saved. of course, it's also harmed people who are innocent. the staff who work there, the suppliers and the consumers. and i think they need to be
punished, those who are responsible. the former ceo still makes a claim to get his full pension. and in the volkswagen holding group, he is still active. the most important questions to ask is, first of all, how come our authorities haven't uncovered this fraud when there are 8 million vehicles affected in the eo au? many are extremely silent. so commissioner, i would ask you to use a bit of energy, not just rely on the national authorities. i think we're going to have to look into some corners. i agree, you can't just denigrate diesel. some people use it because they drive long distances. in economic terms, i don't think we can leave diesel behind. it would cost hundreds and thousands of jobs.
in environmental terms, we need to look at making it clean. it is possible. and if vw kept euro 6 that would be fine. they managed that. but euro 5 was the problem. and they cheated on euro 5. the final point, we need to think of local authorities as well. >> translator: could you wind up please? >> translator: yes. >> translator: mrs. gephart. >> translator: thank you, president. we are dealing with a series of scandals here. the fraud perpetrated was a scandal. it must be investigated and clarified. it is also a scandal here in the european union we have seen a complete breakdown and failure in surveillance and checks. we had to rely open the u.s. to reveal what was happening. another scandal is the fact that
the epa did not notify the european commission on indeed is it a scandal that the european commission was notified and kept silent? that is something we need to clarify. we would like to hear from you. we would like to hear from our commissioner as to what exactly happened here. as for the other issues that arise, we need to put an end to lab-based tests alone. we need real life tests that are actually reflective of what happens on the road. but on-road tests will not be enough. we live in a digital world. we have so many different software devices that can be installed. it is not enough to have on-road testing. we need to look at the various software that can be installed and vet them. commissioner, i would be interested to know what you plan to do along these lines. you did not mention anything
about such software in your introduction. and that is something we will need to consider when it comes to organizing such tests. >> translator: thank you. >> this hearing held earlier this week. we will leave it at this point and go live now to capitol hill. a house committee is set to hear testimony on the same issue this morning. the head of volkswagen's american operations, michael horn, testifying before the house energy committee this morning about the car company admitting to installing software designed to cheat emission tests in 11 million diesel cars worldwide. while they did pass the test, they released nitrogen oxide, up to 40 times allowed by law. the chair of volkswagen has resigned and the company plans to spend $7.3 billion to fix the vehicles, including about 500,000 here in the u.s. epa officials also appearing this morning before the house energy committee. live coverage here on c-span3.
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