German carmakers spark outrage over diesel fumes test on humans, monkeys
Another diesel scandal is gripping German carmakers, but this time it's not about emissions cheating.
Reports have emerged that experiments funded by all three of the country's major automakers exposed humans and monkeys to diesel exhaust fumes.
Ro Aram has the details.
Local reports came out on Monday that a research group called EUGT financed by Volkswagen, BMW and Daimler, the maker of Mercedes-Benz, had measured the effects of inhaling nitrogen oxide gases on 25 healthy people at a German university hospital.
These tests were said to have taken place between 2012 and 2015.
The revelation came days after the New York Times reported that the research group had carried out similar tests on monkeys in the U.S. in 2014.
They were apparently carried out to counter a 2012 decision by the World Health Organization to classify diesel exhaust fumes as a carcinogen.
However, the VW Beetle used in the tests was one of the millions programmed to reduce emissions when lab testing is detected, thus invalidating the data obtained.
The new scandal has sent shockwaves through Germany and the country's environment minister described the experiments as "abominable".
A spokesperson for German Chancellor Angela Merkel also said they cannot be "justified ethically in any way."
Meanwhile, the carmakers seemed to be sidestepping responsibility and even going as far as denouncing the experiments.
Daimler said it was "appalled by the extent of the EUGT studies and their implementation."
VW, while apologizing for the tests, insisted it "explicitly distances itself clearly from all forms of animal abuse."
BMW denied it was involved in the studies.
All three firms decided in late 2016 to dissolve the EUGT, which finally shut its doors last year.