Volkswagen Commits to Ending Car Tests On Animals

Laverne Higgins
February 4, 2018

Scandal-hit auto giant Volkswagen has suspended its chief lobbyist Thomas Steg as outrage mounted over monkey and human experiments to study the effects of diesel exhaust fumes.

Volkswagen officials Monday called for an investigation into the 2014 test and "said such studies were unjustifiable", according to Reuters.

The objective of the experiment was to see whether the pollutant load of nitrogen oxide vehicle emission from diesel motors had decreased or not.

Volkswagen has pledged never to test with animals again. According to the paper, about 19 men and 6 women were exposed to various concentration of diesel fumes which contained toxic nitrogen oxides (NOx) in a test which reportedly took place in Apache in West Germany.

"These tests on monkeys or even humans are in no way ethically justified", said Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert.

Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks called the experiments "abominable" and expressed shock that scientists had agreed to conduct them.

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The New York Times reported on Thursday that a secret United States study saw monkeys forced to breathe diesel exhaust fumes from old and new cars in 2014 to prove modern vehicles are less harmful to the environment.

Daimler, a manufacturer of Mercedes-Benz cars said "We are appalled by the extent of the studies and their implementation. We condemn the experiments in the strongest terms". CEO Matthias Mueller said VW had "taken first consequences" from the tests on monkeys and put on leave Steg, the general representative for external relations and government affairs, who had "taken full responsibility".

The EUGT has been in liquidation since June 30, 2017.

Volkswagen apologized for the animal testing at the weekend, saying the group "distances itself clearly from all forms of animal abuse". Animal testing contradicts our own ethical standards.' It continues, 'We ask forgiveness for this bad behavior and for the poor judgement of some individuals'.

It was VW's admission in 2015 that it had manipulated 11 million diesel cars with cheating software to make them seems less polluting than they were that brought close scrutiny to the industry, which had long touted diesels as better for the environment than gasoline-powered engines.

The tests carried about by a lab in New Mexico involved exposing monkeys to diluted exhaust gases from a Volkswagen diesel in an attempt to measure the success of diesel technology in lowering harmful emissions.

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