"BACKFIRED: When VW Lied to America" tells the inside story of the VW scandal as it unravels beginning at West Virginia University in 2013 where a group of unsuspecting students accidentally discover the defeat device while doing rare on-road testing. They immediately share their stunning discovery with CARB (California Air Resources Board) that verifies the findings and engages with the EPA and DOJ to plot carefully filing suit against VW's top executives. VW is slapped with the largest fine in US auto history: $15 billion in what's now known as "Dieselgate." And, it gets worse. Most recently, it was discovered that VW secretly tested emissions from defeat devices on innocent monkeys at a lab in New Mexico.
From West Virginia to California, to Washington DC, to Germany and Paris, we hear from those who broke the case and sought justice. BACKFIRED will leave viewers with new insight into the role of regulators, the power of money, and the willingness of major corporations knowingly to endanger the health of millions and to increase carbon emissions dramatically. Most important, it will inspire viewers to think about our obligation to our children and to continue the fight for clean air and a livable planet.