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With every passing day, there is an effort to make our surroundings cleaner and greener. 

We are constantly on the hunt for environmentally friendly products and practices. Often ready to toss one thing to the side in favor of its “greener” counter-part. 

A common misconception is that diesel vehicles are more detrimental to the environment than their gasoline counterparts. This myth needs to be busted! And now.

Close-up of a black diesel pump refilling a car’s fuel tank, captioned “Are diesel vehicles more environmentally friendly?"

Understanding why diesel is more environmentally friendly:

  • To comprehend this better, we must first know that production of diesel has undergone a change in the recent years. Diesel is now made with ultra-low sulphur (or ULSD), which greatly reduces emissions. Older diesel cars emitted more nitrogen oxides which could cause acid rain and smog, but the switch to ULSD changes that.
  • What has also made a difference is more efficient engines. Cars are now made with a focus on the environmental impact they carry and how to best counter-act that negative impact.
  • There are also a host of advanced emission control technologies that have surfaced, to help mitigate the adverse effects of emissions.

Here are a few reasons why diesel vehicles are in fact more environmentally friendly than gasoline:

  1. According to a recent study involving a prominent UdeM chemist, fewer carbonaceous particulates are emitted from diesel passenger cars than gasoline powered vehicles. Hopefully, this new piece of research will augment change with regards to diesel emissions.

The chemist notes, “The next step should be to focus on gasoline or removing old diesel vehicles from the road. Modern diesel vehicles have adopted new standards and are now very clean, so attention needs to now turn to regulating on-road and off-road gasoline engines more. That’s really the next target.”

  • We’ve all heard that “seeing is believing,” and this has caused misconceptions of its own. The emission from diesel vehicles can be seen. Therefore, they are sometimes deemed to be more polluting. However, the emissions from gasoline cannot be seen, so we jump to the conclusion that they couldn’t be as harmful.

In fact, these invisible emissions are more polluting than the emissions from diesel vehicles.

  • Research conducted in a lab at the Paul Scherrer Institute, noted that “gasoline cars emitted on average 10 times more carbonaceous PM AT 22ºC and 62 times more at -7ºC compared to diesel cars.”

This irrefutable fact goes to show that diesel is not as polluting as perceived. Black carbon, primary organic aerosol (POA) and secondary organic aerosol (SOA) are the primary constituents of carbonaceous PM. These substances are known to adversely impact the environment.

  • Most new age diesel vehicles come equipped with particulate filters, which to a great extent minimize harmful emissions. Diesel vehicles with particle filters are known to be six times less polluting than gasoline vehicles. Also, the particulate filters in diesel vehicles are said to remove ninety-nine percent of black carbon emissions.
  • Another interesting aspect to consider is the process of producing gasoline and diesel. It is a known and evident fact than gasoline is more refined than diesel and undergoes a series of refining and filtration procedures before being consumed; this process on its own requires energy. Higher energy consumption leaves a higher carbon footprint on the environment.
  • In colder parts of the world, like Idaho; there are increased emissions caused by gasoline vehicles due to the cold start effect. Gasoline vehicles are less efficient in colder climates as they take a longer time to warm up compared to diesel vehicles.

Knowing is Half the Battle

Bearing all facts in mind, there is no conclusive study to say which type of fuel is the best. The endeavor to improve quality of gasoline and diesel will remain a constant.

When buying a new vehicle, ask if it comes equipped with a particulate filter or even consider upgrading your existing vehicle with emission control features. The future calls for vehicles that hinder less and help more.

Proficient at Servicing Your Diesel Vehicle!

It’s also paramount to ensure ALL cars, whether gasoline or diesel, are regularly serviced. Good operating conditions and periodic maintenance will help control emissions to a prominent extent. Gem State Diesel will ensure your diesel vehicles are maintained and serviced with a meticulous eye!

Do your bit to ensure we do not excessively pollute the environment and get your diesel or gasoline vehicles serviced at timely intervals. Call us at (208) 957-6106 to book an appointment now! We know this arena!