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Tuesday, 15 August 1972
Page: 183

Mr Grassby asked the Minister for Education mid Science, upon notice:

(1)   Were tests of the McWade Emission Control Unit, or anti-pollution device for motor vehicles, carried out by Dr Deslandes and Dr Watson of Melbourne University for CSIRO?

(2)   If so (a) what were the conclusions reached by these researchers, (b) has the CSIRO taken into account, in its examination of this unit, tests conducted by Professor J. Tindall of the University of New South Wales; if not, why not and (c) has any further work been carried out by the CSIRO on the unit or is any further work projected?

Mr Malcolm Fraser (WANNON, VICTORIA) - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1)   At the request of the then Prime Minister. CSIRO in early 1971 arranged for limited tests to be made by Dr H. C. Watson of Melbourne University on 2 anti-pollution devices. One of these devices was the McWade Emission Control Unit.

(2)   (a) Dr H. C. Watson concluded that the McWade Unit reduced carbon monoxide emission by 33 per cent and nitrogen oxides by about 10 per cent. The tests were made on only one vehicle and on one McWade Emission Control Unit.

These effects are very much less than (hose required to give a long-term solution to the problem of atmospheric pollution by vehicles, for which reductions of about 90 per cent are generally considered necessary. If an immediate shortterm control of pollution from the motor car is sought Dr Watson has pointed out that overseas tests in the United Kingdom and the United States of America have shown that reductions of up to 20 per cent in hydrocarbons and up to 50 per cent in carbon monoxide can be achieved by simple routine engineering maintenance, such as attention lo spark plugs, ignition timing, and carburettor adjustment.

(b)   No. Details of the tests made by Professor J. Tindall were not made available to CSIRO.

(c)   CSIRO has not carried out any further investigations on this unit nor are any further tests proposed. It is understood that the State Government of New South Wales is proposing to establish a testing' facility for the controlled measurement of vehicle emissions, and CSIRO does not consider it necessary or desirable that such a facility should be duplicated.

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