Statement of the obvious: $3 billion is a lot of money. Remember when there was a continuous drumbeat of news about Volkswagen’s emissions scandal? Volkswagen ended up settling with the USEPA for violations of the Clean Air Act and buying back many of the vehicles impacted by the scandal.
What (you may be wondering) became of the $3 billion? One cool way it is being used is to reduce school bus emissions through the purchase of electric school buses. I’m not sure if it was the vinyl seats or the diesel emissions (or some combination of the two), but I definitely remember some troubling smells when I was riding my school bus as a kid. In fact, according to a press release from the Environmental Law and Policy Center, health officials have asserted that “children’s asthma hospitalizations and missed school days would be greatly improved with widespread adoption of electric school buses.” So there is truly damage being caused by those caustic smells; not to mention the extra emissions coming from those many hours of idling and running buses.
Hopefully the bulk of those settlement dollars will go to projects that will overcompensate for the negatives that necessitated the settlement.