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17 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
November 26th, 2001
"the deck is stcked against TDI's"
just by accident, I stumbled on a
fantastic article about diesels: go to http://www.dieselforum.org, then look
for features, then reports/whipepapers: there is a really good
titled "demand for diesels- the european experience" which compares the
situation in Europe with the one here. In particular, it mentions that
the upcoming Tier 2 standards are biased in favour of gasoline vehicles,
even though diesel consumes less, and even though gasoline engines
produce more carbon monoxide (CO) hydrocarbons (HC) and carbon dioxide
(CO2). Only in the nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM)
does the diesel engine produce more than the gasoline engine. This
makes it very difficult for diesel engine makers to meet these
standards. In comparison, the Europeans have adopted a more balanced
approach, not biased against diesel engines, so that they benefit from a
lot less greenhouse gas emissions, and are less dependent on oil
imports. This means that legislators in North America must be shown
this whitepaper, so they may be able to understand that our emission
standards are hurting, instead of helping, the emission situation here.
There is no way Volkswagen or any diesel manufacturer has a chance in
this market when standards are biased in favour of gasoline motor
technology, which pollutes more than diesels in many respects.

11,982 Posts
Re: EPA Tier 2 standards hinder TDI's (Viking)

The problem is that North American legislators have the following attitude:
Don't confuse me with the facts. I've already made up my mind.
North American emission limits are 100% based on political motivation, with no technical or scientific basis whatsoever. They SAY they have technical or scientific basis, but that's only BS covering up the political motivation.
Every few years, California sets standards that they believe cannot be met without electric cars or natural gas or whatever. Every time (with one exception, they had to back down on "zero emission vehicles"), the auto makers have come up with something. Thus, the bureaucrats get the impression that they can set standards arbitrarily low and somehow the engineers will come up with something to comply. The problem is that compromises are being forced upon the manufacturers which are not necessarily in our long-term interest. Reducing CO2 emissions and reducing consumption of natural resources ARE in our long-term interest, but the existing legislative environment does not recognize that there are compromises which must be made.
This whole attitude on the part of the lawmakers ticks me off big-time. I'm not anti-environment. Far from it. I just happen to believe that reducing consumption and reducing CO2 are things which as a society, we ought to be doing. The regulated emissions are important but when the rules become so strict that what's coming out the tailpipe is cleaner (in terms of regulated emissions) than what went in the air cleaner, something's wrong. When it forces the vehicle to become so complex that nobody knows how to repair it (and it will cost a fortune to repair if they somehow manage it), something's wrong. When it forces the use of technology that has a thermal efficiency of 20% instead of 35% at a minor tradeoff of some regulated emissions, something's wrong. When it asks for power to be supplied through electrical grids that don't exist, something's wrong. When it asks for electrical power to be used to propel vehicles and thus transferring a greater amount of emissions elsewhere (the energy has to come from somewhere, and the more steps that are involved in the process the lower the overall efficiency), something's wrong.
VW has published somewhere (don't recall where) that particulate emissions from a current Golf TDI are about 0.03 grams per kilometer. Assign a nominal life of 200,000 km for comparison, you get lifetime particulate emissions of 6 kg. That is insignificant. The TIRES will emit more particles than that in the same lifetime. It is absurd to go to great lengths to reduce emissions when other uncontrollable sources of the same emissions (not necessarily on the vehicle) dwarf the emissions you're trying to control.
Did you know that thunderstorms produce NOx ...
Sorry about the rant; I don't get along with bureaucrats too well ...
Brian P.
'96 Passat TDI mit UPsolute
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