The choices are to pollute and use less fuel. ( nothing is done)
Meet emissions standards and use more fuel. ( fix emissions).
The second option will likely emit more CO2 which is not a pollutant but a green house gas. The only way to elinate that completely is electric by battery. I'm not sure how much CO2 is released by hydrogen powered fuel cell.
The mess made by VW has the other effect of restricting sales from other manufacturers. How many would have bought VW diesels if the mileage was reduced to meet spec? I suppose we don't know until it's fixed. It seems highway will be down into say 40 mpg instead of 46 +.
NOx is way more harmful than CO2. I understand the desire of every VW TDI owner to just keep things as is, and find whatever justification that feels plausible, but the company cheated big time and the consequences need to be fixed. And yes, there are plenty of cheated customers and competitors that are justly entitled to compensation. Lawyers of the world just got a huge body of work to do, and the German taxpayers will probably be left with a huge mess on their hands. I just don't believe VW will be able to survive without a government bailout at the end.
I am not saying not to punish VW, this needs to happen, so it doesn't happen again.
I don't think it makes any sense to upgrade a bunch of used cars. You could probably get way more NOx reduction for the same or less money by making VW invest in industrial pollution controls. You could even (maybe) move the electric system a couple of billion dollars closer to a more sustainable system. VW will be punished, the environment will be better off, and TDI owners will not lose anything.
I agree. Also set up a buyback program for the people who do want to get out of the cars. Any VW that is traded at a dealer, VW has to buy back. They create a schedule for the value of each model and options, adjustment for miles and it might change every 6 months. This can be done fairly easy, Subaru does this already with their GTP (Guaranteed Trade Program). You have the choice of keeping the cars the way they are now or also bring them in for the upgrade (whatever that is) and you will also get an extended warranty for say 3 years/50K miles. You will have 12 months to decide one of the three options.