LAC Pollution Musings, was Massachusetts 4KTQ owner question

Tue Dec 17 20:40:41 EST 2002

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In a message dated 12/17/02 3:37:43 PM Eastern Standard Time,
quattro-request at writes:

> Now add another strand of thought. The private car owner here in the UK
> and (from what I read on this list and elsewhere) in the US and other
> countries seem to bear the brunt of pollution control, IE catalyst
> equipment
> and ever more stringent controls, tests and inspections to make sure that
> our personal transport creates the minimum amount of pollution (once
> manufactured!). On the other hand I think I'm right in saying that
> pollution
> control on things like big commercial vehicles, diesel trucks etc  is at a
> minimum, just one example being the common practice of crankcases that vent
> direct to the atmosphere.
    While not wanting to say that the pollution issues are overstated, there
is much to be reconsidered. Auto pollution is one of those things which have
"caught on", because it is visible and within what the philosophers call the
"cognizable horizon" of most people. The facts aren't allowed to interfere
with the desire. It is sort of like the war on pesticides. It is estimated
that the average person consumes 10,000 times the amount of natural
pesticides as manufactured pesticides. However, you don't see bumper stickers
reading "End Peanuts".
As to the buses and commercial vehicles, I believe that much of what we
regard as pollutants which they disperse are solids. Therefore, they fall out
of the air and mostly create dirt.
     Incidentally, Massachusetts refused to accept the Federal standards
until the Feds threatened to hold back the Federal Highway Funds. Then,
Massachusetts became enlightened with a vengeance. There are those who
believe our Civil War was over State's Rights. It matters not now, those
rights have been purchased with Federal Funds.
Tom Faust

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