Forbes and MSNBC have ranked the worst vehicle polluters on the planet, and VW and Jeep took the top spots. The rankings excluded some models like Ferrari and Lamborghini, but include the relatively low-volume HUMMER H2, which is shown to pollute less than the Volkswagon Touareg TDI, Jeep Grand Cherokee CRD, and three diesel-powered Mercedes SUVs included in the study.
Compared to the H2, there are far more Touareg TDI and Jeep Grand Cherokee CRD models on the road – which multiplies their already larger carbon footprint that much higher. So why then, does the HUMMER H2 get the negative publicity when there are much more common and worse polluters on the road?
In some ways, it may be a hollow victory for HUMMER’s marketing and design teams. If HUMMERs weren’t so widely known and recognized by anyone over the age of 2, they wouldn’t be such an easy target. Another reason is that so many media outlets have stereotyped the HUMMER to be the worst polluters, people have actually come to accept it has truth.
We’ve decided to help the mainstream media improve their accuracy by substituting “VW Touareg TDI” instead of “HUMMER” in these articles, since the intent of these stories was to shine light on a heavy polluter. If they wanted the most impact, they should have gone with the vehicle with the most impact, right?
Would You Like a Gas Guzzler With That? – New York Times
“Not surprisingly, environmental groups are appalled. Brendan Bell, an energy policy analyst at the Sierra Club, says that VW Touareg TDIs in Happy Meals are about as responsible as “dipping a Big Mac in the fry oil and serving it to your kids.”
Who’s paying VW Touareg TDI gas bills? – LA Times
“More than one reader has asked whether taxpayers are getting stuck with the tab when Los Angeles Deputy Mayor for Transportation Jaime de la Vega fills up his VW Touareg TDI. Last time I checked, the answer was no. If anyone at City Hall knows differently, feel free to weigh in.”