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Volkswagen agrees to environmental settlement
Washington will receive $28 million

Volkswagen Group has settled with the Department of Ecology over environmental penalty claims for violating the Washington Clean Air Act.

In 2016, Ecology issued a $176 million penalty to Volkswagen. After reaching a multistate settlement Wednesday, March 29, Volkswagen has agreed to pay 10 states $157 million – $28 million of which will go to Washington. Read the full details.


Washington fines VW for installing fraudulent emission software

Ecology issued a $176 million Notice of Penalty to Volkswagen installing illegal software on some of its diesel vehicles. Volkswagen previously admitted to the EPA they were guilty of installing the software. As a result of the software, the affected vehicles are emitting up to 40 times the permitted levels of nitrogen oxides. Volkswagen received two notices of violation from Ecology before receiving the penalty. Violation notices were issued Nov. 10, 2015, and March 10, 2016.

Volkswagen installed the software on certain diesel vehicles equipped with 2.0 and 3.0 liter engines. The software cheats emissions tests by only turning on the vehicles’ emission control systems when the car is being tested. As a result, these vehicles emit up to 40 times the permitted levels of nitrogen oxides when driven normally. The state laws violated were:

  • Low Emission Vehicles – Chapter 173-423 WAC
  • Motor Vehicle Emission Control Systems – Chapter 173-421 WAC (Washington Administrative Code)
  • Motor Vehicle Emission Standards – Chapter 70.120A RCW (Revised Code of Washington)
  • Washington Clean Air Act – Chapter 70.94 RCW

View the video below about the $176 million Ecology penalty.

For more information visit:

Department of Ecology Notice of Penalty
VW light duty diesel vehicle violations for years 2009-2016
Washington takes enforcement action against VW: Nov. 16, 2015 News Release
Washington fines VW $176 million for violating clean air laws: July 28, 2016 News Release

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