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New Atlas Details More Than 3.5 Trillion Tons of Possible CO2 Storage Capacity in US and Canada

Primary sources of stationary CO2 emissions in the US and Canada. The color of the dots indicates the type of source, the diameter, the magnitude of emissions release. Click to enlarge. The Department of Energy’s (DOE) Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnerships have identified carbon storage capacity in the US and Canada... Read more →

Swedish Researcher Forecasts Peak Oil Between 2008 and 2018 Based on Analysis of Giant Field Production

The higher-end standard case forecast. Click to enlarge. A researcher at Uppsala University in Sweden has developed a forecast model for global oil production based heavily on a field-by-field analysis focusing on giant oil fields—a giant field being one which will ultimately produce more than 500 million barrels (0.5 Gb)... Read more →

Marathon Prepping E10 for Florida, Tussling with State

Fueling Station. Marathon Petroleum is preparing to introduce E10 blends throughout Florida, but is deadlocked with state regulators over technical standards. The issue arises from vapor volatility in ethanol blends. In extreme cases it can cause vapor lock in car engines, causing them to stall. Florida follows the industry standard... Read more →

Pulp Mill Proposes Biomass Gasification Project to Replace Natural Gas; Hydrogen Generation a Possibility

The HydroMax reactor and the two stages of processing. Click to enlarge. Diversified Energy Corporation and Evergreen Pulp have formed a partnership and submitted a proposal to pursue a project to replace natural gas usage at the pulp mill with syngas produced on-site by the gasification of low-value excess wood... Read more →

BMW Emphasizes Improved Efficiency of New 4-Cylinder Engines; Gasoline Direct Injection and Diesel

New 2.0-liter diesel with Variable Twin Turbo and 2,000-bar injection. Particulate filter is the cylinder at left rear. Click to enlarge. At its recent Innovation Day 2007 in Germany, BMW emphasized the role its new families of four-cylinder diesel and gasoline engines will play in increasing fuel economy while still... Read more →

Kansas Governor Signs Carbon Sequestration Bill

Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius has signed a bill that provides incentives for the underground sequestration of carbon dioxide. Among other things, the bill provides incentives by allowing any carbon dioxide capture, sequestration and utilization property and any electric generation unit which captures and sequesters all carbon dioxide and other emissions... Read more →

EPA Issues Guidance on Urea SCR for Diesel Emissions Control

The EPA has issued guidance on emission certification procedures for on-road diesels that use selective catalyst reduction (SCR) technology for NOx reduction. This guidance enables automakers, for the first time, to adapt the technology to light- and heavy-duty vehicles in the US. The specific area of concern is the use... Read more →

Biden Introduces Bill Focused on Li-Ion Battery Development for EVs and Plug-Ins

US Senator Joe Biden (D-DE) has introduced legislation that would significantly increase US investment in the development of advanced lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids. “The American Automobile Industry Promotion Act of 2007” (S.1055) authorizes $100 million a year for five years to advance the technology—double the amount... Read more →

Odyne and FAB in Sales and Marketing Agreement for PHEV Systems

Odyne Corporation, a developer of advanced plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) technology for trucks and buses, and FAB Holdings, a system integrator and service provider for alternative fuel storage vehicles, have signed a strategic sales and marketing agreement. FAB Holdings will have exclusive rights to distribute and install Odyne’s propulsion... Read more →

US Farmers to Increase Corn Acreage by 15% in 2007; Ethanol a Driver

Corn farmers in the US intend to plant 90.5 million acres of corn for all purposes in 2007, up 15% percent from 2006 and 11% higher than 2005, according to the just-released US Department of Agriculture’s annual Prospective Plantings report. Corn plantings up, soybeans down. Click to enlarge. If realized... Read more →

Mendel Biotechnology Acquires Miscanthus Breeding Program from Tinplant

Mendel Biotechnology, a functional genomics company, has acquired the entire Miscanthus breeding program from Tinplant Biotechnik und Pflanzenvermehrung GmbH, a German breeding and plant science company. Miscanthus is one of the leading candidates for dedicated energy crops for production of biofuels such as ethanol from lignocellulosic plant material. Mendel plans... Read more →

GAO Peak Oil Report Highlights Challenges in Transportation Sector

The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) has published a report examining peak oil, exploring (1) when oil production could peak, (2) federal agency efforts that could reduce uncertainty about the timing of peak oil production or mitigate the consequences, and (3) the potential for transportation technologies to mitigate the consequences... Read more →

Ford Supports University of Melbourne Project on Hydrogen Combustion Engines

A HAJI jet. Ford Motor Company of Australia has confirmed its support of a long-term research project by the University of Melbourne to study efficient hydrogen fueled vehicle technologies. The project also received a A$1.2 million grant from the Victorian State Government. The first stage of the project aims to... Read more →

Sweden’s “Green Car” Cash Bonus to Begin 1 April

The Swedish government will launch its new “green car” bonus program, designed to encourage car buyers to invest in fuel-efficient vehicles, this Sunday, 1 April. Sweden’s Minister of the Environment, Andreas Carlgren announced that the purchase of an environmentally friendly car will entitle the buyer to a SEK 10,000 ($US1,400)... Read more →

O2Diesel Adds Two More Communities to CityHome Ethanol-Diesel Program

The communities of Lead and Deadwood, South Dakota, the latest to join O2Diesel’s CityHome program, will run the ethanol-diesel blend in all the school buses in the Lead-Deadwood School District. The O2Diesel Corporation has introduced cleaner burning renewable ethanol diesel fuel blends in transit and school bus fleets in North... Read more →

Two Chinese Auto Companies Selected for China’s Green Procurement List

People’s Daily. For the first time, China has certified two Chinese automobile companies for the China Environmental Labeling procurement list. The government certified ten automobile companies in total, two of which are Chinese: Chery and Zhonghua Car. This is the second batch of car brands to be put on the... Read more →

Nissan to Introduce New Engine Valve Control Technology on Infiniti G37 Coupe; Up To 10% Efficiency Gain

The VVEL system. Click to enlarge. Nissan Motor is combining its newly developed Variable Valve Event and Lift (VVEL) and continuous valve timing control (C-VTC) technologies to deliver enhanced efficiency and performance. The first product to feature the VVEL technology will be the Infiniti G37 coupe, scheduled to be unveiled... Read more →

ZAP in Pilot Program with City for Electric Trucks

The City of Richmond, California and ZAP are launching a pilot fleet program to demonstrate ZAP Xebra electric trucks in the city fleet. (Earlier post.) The XEBRA is manufactured through a strategic partnership with a Chinese auto manufacturer and available through ZAP’s authorized dealers at a price of about $10,000. Read more →

DuPont and Honeywell to Partner on Low Global Warming Refrigerants for Automobiles

DuPont and Honeywell have entered a global joint development agreement to accelerate the development and commercialization of flourine-based, low global warming refrigerants for mobile air conditioning (MAC) systems in automobiles. Today’s automotive air conditioners use hydrofluorocarbon (HFC)-134a—one of the basket of greenhouse gases monitored by the Kyoto Protocol. HFC-134a has... Read more →

Quantum Ships 11 Hydrogen Hybrids with Extended Range Package to Norway

H2 Prius units for Norway. Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide has shipped eleven hydrogen-fueled Prius hybrid vehicles to Miljobil Grenland AS, a participant and vehicle provider to the Norwegian Hydrogen Highway project (HyNor). The 11 are part of an order for 15 placed last year. (Earlier post.) The Hydrogen Hybrid... Read more →

Chevrolet to Unveil Three Minicar Concepts in New York; Vote for Your Favorite

The Chevrolet Trax concept. Chevrolet will unveil three minicar global concepts at the New York International Auto Show on 4 April. After the 4 April unveiling, consumers can pick their favorite by visiting www.vote4chevrolet.com and casting a vote for the concept they prefer. The results will help Chevy determine US... Read more →

Trend to Heavier, More Powerful Hybrids Eroding the Technology’s Fuel Consumption Benefit

Trends in average hybrid performance: curb weight, net hybrid system peak power, and fuel consumption. Variability across models is indicated by the error bars. Click to enlarge. The market trend to heavier, more powerful hybrids is eroding the fuel consumption advantage of hybrid technology, according to a study done by... Read more →

Ford of Europe Exec Highlights Need for Near-Term, Volume Solutions to Reduce Automotive CO2: Efficient Powertrains and Biofuels

Speaking at the Automotive News Europe New Powertrain Technologies Conference, Lewis Booth, Executive Vice President, Ford of Europe and Premier Automotive Group, called global warming “one of the biggest challenges facing our planet” and said that it is also one of the biggest challenges facing the car industry today. Although... Read more →

Petrobras and Eni to Partner on New Biofuel and Heavy Oil Production Technologies

Petrobras and Eni signed a Memorandum of Understanding aimed at evaluating future partnership in the production of biofuels and in heavy oil refining. The two companies will combine their proprietary technologies to jointly develop projects for the production of biofuels in other countries. The agreement includes possible cooperation in the... Read more →

Researchers Investigate Health Impact of Airborne Platinum from Catalytic Converters

Researchers in Italy are investigating the effect of atmospheric platinum group elements (PGEs)—increasing in concentration due to the increased numbers of catalytic converters—on human enzymatic systems and antioxidants. Claudio Botrè of the University of Rome and Alessandro Alimonti of the Italian National Institute of Health in Rome and their colleagues... Read more →

Leaders of Senate Energy Committee Introduce Biofuels Bill: 36 Billion Gallons by 2022

US Senators Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and Pete Domenici (R-NM), the chair and ranking member, respectively, of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, introduced legislation that increases the required renewable fuel standard from 8.5 billion gallons in 2008 to 36 billion gallons in 2022. The “Biofuels for Energy Security and... Read more →

New System Monitors Emissions in Moving Vehicles; Targeted to Fleet Managers

Eco-Log system diagram. Click to enlarge A UK-based automotive consultancy and software developer, Lysanda, has introduced Eco-Log, a system that calculates and reports the composition and the levels of emissions from a moving vehicle. Rather than directly measure the gases in the exhaust pipe, the Eco-Log uses signals obtained from... Read more →

Boeing Prepares Fuel Cell Demonstrator Airplane for Flight Testing

Cutaway drawing of Boeing fuel cell demonstrator plane. Click to enlarge. Boeing researchers and industry partners throughout Europe plan to conduct experimental flight tests this year of a manned airplane powered only by a 20 kW fuel cell and a lithium-ion battery pack. The systems integration phase of the Fuel... Read more →

Mitsui Engineering to Launch Cellulosic Ethanol Trials

Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. will launch field trials of cellulosic ethanol in a joint project with Okayama Prefecture in April. The partners will evaluate different feedstocks—rice straw and hulls, sorghum, and corn stover—to determine which crops are most suitable for efficient and profitable ethanol production. Separately, Mitsui Engineering plans... Read more →

DOE Awards $23 Million For Development of Highly Efficient Fermentative Organisms for Cellulosic Ethanol Production

The US Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded more than $23 million in federal funding for five projects focused on developing highly efficient fermentative organisms to convert biomass material to ethanol. The award for these five cellulosic ethanol projects follows the award of $385 million in federal funds to six... Read more →

Researchers Hunt for Substitute for Palladium for Purifying Hydrogen for Fuel Cell Use

Researchers, including scientists at the US Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory, are engaged in a 3-year project in search of a cost-effective substitute for palladium for use in proton exchange membrane (PEM) hydrogen fuel cells. Palladium is used to remove impurities in hydrogen that could reduce the efficiency of the... Read more →

Hybrid Electric Future Heavy Truck Demonstrators Begin Testing

The demonstrator FTTS-MSV hybrid. Two hybrid electric future heavy truck demonstrators developed by Armor Holdings for the US Army that are powered by UQM electric propulsion systems began Military Utility Assessment (MUA) testing this month. Armor Holdings acquired the tactical vehicle business from Stewart and Stevenson, who originally had been... Read more →

ECOtality and JPL Report Improvements in On-Board Hydrogen Generation System

ECOtality and Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) have reported improved performance in the current version of ECOtality’s Hydratus technology. (Earlier post.) Hydratus is a portable apparatus that produces hydrogen on-demand from magnesium and water, and operates in conjunction with existing hydrogen fuel cell technology. The project partners refer to the current... Read more →

DaimlerChrysler Includes New 2007 Sprinter in Plug-in Hybrid Program

The 2007 Dodge Sprinter. DaimlerChrysler is expanding its concept plug-in hybrid program to include the all-new 2007 Dodge Sprinter. Up to 20 Dodge Sprinter Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV) will be placed in the United States between now and the first quarter of 2008 as part of a test-fleet program.... Read more →

EPA Awards $150,000 for Diesel Emissions Reductions in Ohio

The US Environmental Protection Agency has awarded a $150,000 grant to the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission for a cooperative project to cut emissions from public diesel fleets in central Ohio. An additional $68,924 for the project will come from local sources. The project, called the Mid-Ohio Public Diesel Fleet Initiative,... Read more →

Researchers Develop Longer-Lasting, Biodegradable Bio Fuel Cell Powered by Sugar

Researchers at Saint Louis University have developed a biodegradable bio fuel cell that runs on virtually any sugar source and has the potential to operate three to four times longer on a single fill than conventional lithium ion batteries. They described their findings at the 233rd national meeting of the... Read more →

ANSI and NIST Convening Meeting on Biofuels Standardization in Advance of EU-US Summit

The United States and the European Union have expressed strong interest in making biofuels a commodity for trade. Compatible standards will be among the chief topics of discussion at the upcoming EU-US Summit in Washington, DC, which intends to launch a new trans-Atlantic economic partnership aimed at harmonizing regulations, technical... Read more →

China’s Gasoline Consumption to Climb 24.7% by 2010

Resource Investor. Gasoline consumption in China will rise 24.7% from last year’s level to reach 65.44 million tonnes (about 24.5 billion gallons US) by 2010, according to government projections. Gasoline consumption hit 52.47 million tonnes (19.7 billion gallons US) last year, an 8.4% year-on-year growth, after the year’s car sales... Read more →

Brazilian Sugarcane Group to Partner with China on Ethanol Plants

Grupo Farias, one of the larger sugarcane processors in northeast Brazil, has signed a protocol of intentions with Chinese investors to build ethanol plants that could process up to 10 million metric tons of sugarcane per harvest. The Chinese companies interested in investing in Brazilian ethanol mills could be Jilin... Read more →

New Enzyme-Based Fuel Cell Produces Electricity from Hydrogen in Plain Air

Schematic representation of a bio fuel cell involving hydrogenase and laccase enzymes. Click to enlarge. Source: Armstrong Research Group Researchers at Oxford University have developed an enzyme-based fuel cell that produces electricity from ordinary air spiked with small amounts of hydrogen. The new type of cell would be an inexpensive... Read more →

Nissan V6 Skyline Delivers 38 MPG in Road Test

Nissan Skyline 250GT. A Nissan driving team extracted 38 mpg from a new conventional 2.5-liter Nissan Skyline in an “eco-driving” challenge on real roads with unpredictable traffic and weather conditions and with different drivers. The Skyline model, powered by the VQ25HR V6 engine (225 hp / 168 kW of power... Read more →

Mitsubishi In 30-Year Ethanol Supply Deal With Brazilian Producer

Nikkei. Mitsubishi has signed a 30-year contract with Brazil’s Grupo Sao Martinho for the supply of ethanol. The fuel supplied through the contract would be equivalent to roughly 15% of Japan’s total annual ethanol needs. Mitsubishi will take a 10% equity stake in Usina Boa Vista, a subsidiary of Grupo... Read more →

Congressman Proposes Tax Credit for Plug-in Hybrids and EVs

US Representative Dave Camp (R-MI) has introduced new legislation that would provide individuals and businesses with a tax credit for the purchase of vehicles with larger battery packs, such as plug-in hybrids or battery electric vehicles. To qualify under Camp’s proposal, a vehicle must have at least a 4 kWh... Read more →

Nova Scotia to Introduce Tailpipe Greenhouse Gas Standards by 2010

Nova Scotia’s Minister of Environment and Labor, Mark Parent, last week introduced a bill that among other features would mandate tailpipe greenhouse gas emission standards for motor vehicles by 2010. The “Act Respecting Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity” outlines more that 20 initiatives and objectives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions... Read more →

Transport Canada Buys Two Hybrid Technologies Converted EVs for Evaluation

Transport Canada is purchasing a converted electric PT Cruiser and smart car from Hybrid Technologies for evaluation under the new ecoTechnology for Vehicles Program. The program supports the in-depth testing and publishing of the safety and environmental performance of a range of emerging technologies for use in light-duty vehicles. Transport... Read more →