|The Focus FFV|
Researchers at Imperial College, London, have led the first study into actual CO2 output for a Ford Focus Flexible Fuel Vehicle reflecting its use of a renewable fuel.
While Ford’s 1.8-liter FFV emits 169g CO2/km from its exhaust pipe, the Imperial College research says this drops to 99.6g when CO2 absorption by crops grown to make bio-ethanol is factored in.
The ethanol in the E85 blends sold in the UK can be made from UK-grown crops such as wheat or sugar beet. Emissions of CO2 from the Ford Focus FFV were measured on a well-to-wheel basis, factoring in the entire life cycle of the fuel.
Imperial College used data from the UK’s Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership and the European Consortium for Automotive Research (EUCAR), including well-to-wheel emissions figures for bio- and fossil fuels. The research was based on bio-fuel production in efficient modern plants, such as those under construction in the UK and becoming operational from the end of this year.
Bio-fuels generally, and bio-ethanol particularly, could provide a major contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from transport. I welcome Ford’s lead in this area and trust that Government policies will encourage greater use of bio-fuels and the purchase of vehicles operating with high bio-fuel blends.—Dr Jeremy Woods, research fellow of Imperial’s Centre for Environmental Policy