Last week, The New York Times reported on a US research facility where 10 monkeys were locked in an airtight container, watching cartoons to distract them, as they breathed in fumes from a Volkswagen vehicle. "On behalf of whole of supervisory board I myself with complete determination of this type of practice", he announced.
The revelations sent shockwaves through the German establishment.
Volkswagen admitted that 11 million of its vehicles were equipped with software that was used to cheat on emissions tests. The New York Times recently broke the news that Volkswagen not only rigged an emissions test but also forced monkeys to inhale the unsafe diesel fumes. "What auto manufacturers have to do with emissions is to reduce m and not pretend to show that y are not harmful". The New York Times reports how the Lovelace breathing experts had trouble finalizing their research, despite pressure from EUGT to do so.
"The Süddeutscher and both reported on Monday that a research group funded by the auto industry giants tested the effects of gas nitrogen dioxide - a component of vehicle exhaust - on " healthy young persons".
The human trial had 25 people breathe in diesel exhaust at a clinic used by the University of Aachen, Stuttgarter Zeitung reported Monday, citing annual reports from the European Research Group on Environment and Health in the Transport Sector, or EUGT, which closed past year.
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Germany's federal government said on Monday the tests were "in no way ethically justifiable".
The human study, carried out by Aachen University, involved studying the effects of exposing 25 subjects, mostly students, to low levels of nitrogen dioxide like those that could be found in the environment - from a 40-litre bottle, not a diesel engine.
The chairman of the Supervisory Board of Volkswagen (VW), Hans Dieter Putsch, criticized on Monday for alleged experiments of the company with monkeys and humans who would have been inhaling gases from diesel engines of the company, according to information from several German media sources.
In a statement cited by Bloomberg, Volkswagen says it "explicitly distances itself from all forms of animal cruelty", as "animal testing contradicts our own ethical standards". These innocent animals should not be the ones to suffer for corporate greed.
"We are convinced that the scientific methods chosen at the time were wrong". Daimler, for its part, said it "condemn (s) the experiments in the strongest terms", and was "appalled by the extent of the studies and their implementation." The tests, conducted in 2014, were first revealed last week by The New York Times, which had acquired accounts of the trials from lawsuits filed in the United States.
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In a statement over the weekend, Volkswagen apologised for the misconduct and lack of judgment shown by individuals.
Human test subjects, however, were still involved in a separate emissions study that the three German automakers were said to have been aware of. Daimler also promised to probe, while saying it didn't have any influence over the study.
"The BMW Group did not participate in the mentioned study and distances itself from this study".
In an even stranger twist, it turned out that the scientists conducting the experiment had been given a Volkswagen Beetle rigged to burn cleaner in a lab environment.
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