An interactive mapping tool shows the effects of the Volkswagen diesel scandal on populations across California. The interactive map suggests that a response — by VW — could make amends to those hardest hit. Those affected by the VW diesel mishap will likely appreciate this mapping tool.
A recent press release from CalCEF included this active map via Kevala Analytics. You can access the map here.
The CalCEF map notes, “In California alone, Volkswagen has sold over 193,000 ‘clean diesel’ cars since 2009. It has been reported that these vehicles actually emit more than 40 times the authorized amounts of NOx and particulate matter.”
The following screenshots taken from the interactive online map help tell the story of how these non-compliant VWs are affecting California’s environment. Online viewers can explore the air quality of communities based on data indicating where the cars are, where are they driving.
The orange dots stand for the non-compliant VWs on this screenshot above (taken from the interactive map by Kevala Analytics). Once on the interactive map, one can click on a zip code. Doing this, one will view the map to see the top 5 commute routes (in blue).
The screenshots above and alone below highlight the “Pollution and Poverty Index.” You can see levels of “pollution and poverty” in purple.
In the top bar to the right, one can select a district or county you’re interested in to view these details for that area.
If you select a district, separate counts of the estimated cases of asthma and expected annual costs, as well as the number of non-compliant VWs, show for that region. Example of an individual district:
Emissions-free driving is possible, and California is the leading state for EV charging stations. But the state still needs improvement — and this is a case in point.
In this interactive map, you can click on the EV chargers in green to locate EV infrastructure and the eVgo chargers in light green to show the location of eVgo chargers that were “installed due to another recent legal settlement,” as the map notes.
According to the press release from CalCEF, ‘The communities that suffer most should benefit from VW’s post-scandal actions first.”
“This new digital tool displays the registration location of every non-compliant diesel Volkswagen in the state of California, and provides a selection of overlays that shows the effects of Volkswagen’s mass cheating on pollution testing. The map, developed by Kevala for the California Clean Energy Fund, shows that the resulting air pollution hits poor and minority communities especially hard—and suggests that these same communities could benefit greatly from the automaker’s efforts to make amends.”
The map was released before Volkswagen’s November 20 deadline to propose a reparations plan to the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
“This scandal presents an opportunity to bring solutions to those who are suffering the most from dangerously dirty air,” said Danny Kennedy, managing director of the California Clean Energy Fund. “This map shows those most impacted by VW’s malfeasance live in poorer communities and communities of color, which bear the burden of some of our state’s highest rates of air pollution. VW has the power to begin to correct that injustice by expanding access to clean transportation in these neighborhoods.”
As you may have presumed, electric vehicle charging stations — a key ingredient of clean-vehicle transportation — are found mostly in affluent neighborhoods.
Continuing the press quotes: “Volkswagen is reportedly setting aside billions of dollars to pay for its malfeasance. One potential option would be for VW to provide electric vehicle charging stations, incentives and financing to encourage more clean electric vehicles, especially in communities that so far lack electric-vehicle infrastructure.”
Kennedy added, “Penalties resulting from Volkswagen’s dirty-diesel scandal could begin to redress this imbalance, by expanding electric vehicle access in disadvantaged communities.”
Sometimes things get worse to provide the motive force for change for the better. This map from CalCEF is a keen visual tool prompting thorough change that could come about thanks to the VW diesel scandal. Also check out EV Obsession‘s story, “Volkswagon Diesel Car Scandal Causing Surge EV Interest.”
Check out more about CalCEF if interested.
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