Who would have known that it's the diesel vehicles, which for decades have been proclaimed as friendly-environment cars, are the ones that actually pollute the atmosphere most of them all? Experts blame on diesel engine pollution thousands of early deaths' cases per year. Shocking, isn't it?
It has been asserted recently that the diesel vehicles are more polluting than gasoline vehicles and do not return better mileage as it was considered earlier. Europe and England, where they have the biggest number of this type of cars, are finally seeing their mistake. London and Paris are now more polluted than even Beijing, which, until recent times, held the status of the most air polluted city in the world and whose air (or rather the lack of it) was referred to as "airpocalypse".
And now it's streets are reported to be full of nitrogen dioxide, an extremely harmful air pollutant, its value higher than anywhere in the world. Diesels for decades output much higher levels of fine particulate as a product of the combustion cycle than gasoline. The interesting thing is that it is probable that the authorities actually knew about the possibility of this problem years ago and still decided to go with the diesel autos and allowed the use of them to be promoted, so now that results in about half of the cars being diesel and not gasoline. "Successive governments knew more than 10 years ago that diesel was producing all these harmful pollutants, but they myopically plowed on with their CO2 agenda," said Simon Birkett, founder of Clean Air in London, a nonprofit group. "It's been a catastrophe for air pollution, and that's not too strong a word. It's a public-health catastrophe."
But now, it seems, the tide have finally turned for diesel in Europe and the myth of “clean” diesel is being challenged by the very same authorities who were previously speaking up pro diesel fuel for decades! What an upturn!
For example, the Paris deputy Mayor Anne Hidalgo was quoted as saying that “Irresponsible policies” encouraging diesel use, rather than gasoline, were in part to blame. She is just one of many pointing this out.
Gilles Aymoz, the head of air quality service at the French Environment agency Ademe, blames diesel vehicles and wood stoves for outputting the fine particulate that is the main source of the pollution.
"Exposure to air pollution is associated with increases in deaths from cardiovascular disease such as heart attacks and strokes," Langrish said. "It's associated with respiratory problems like asthma."
The toxic particles from diesel pass through the lungs and then enter other organs in the body which raises risks of stroke, heart attack and asthma problems. The World Health Organization says that the fumes generated by diesel-powered cars also harm the brains of young children raising their risks for bronchitis, schizophrenia and autism.
Automakers of course are resisting the authorities' attempts to prohibit the use of diesel vehicles or at least decrease it. No wonder they do this after investing heavily in the technology they were for decades encouraged to develop! The new generation diesel models now use expensive methods of bringing fine particulate emissions to within the legal limit, but per mile diesel still produces more CO2 than traditional gasoline motors.