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Europe Closing in on 6% Lower Carbon Road Fuel Standard by 2020

Europe is moving closer to finalizing a new fuel quality law which will require fuel suppliers to cut full life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions from road fuels by 6% between 2010 and 2020.

ENDS (Environmental Data Services) reports that the cuts are expected to come from production efficiency improvements and a switch to biofuels and other cleaner fuels. Biofuel sustainability criteria will be added to the new law once they have been agreed in separate negotiations relating to the new Renewable Energy Directive.

The deal will require oil companies and other fuel suppliers (obligated parties) to cut road fuel life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions by 6% from 2010 to 2020. The European Commission had proposed earlier that there should be a mandatory 10% cut. The Commission says that it will review progress in 2012 and may then propose an extra 2% cut requirement.

In response to the news the European oil industry trade body, EUROPIA, said the 6% emission cut made the new law more aligned with a target to boost biofuels expected in the Renewables Directive. The Association repeated that the reduction target should not apply to fossil fuels and that it would not improve refinery efficiency beyond the level already being encouraged by the EU’s emission trading system.

This coming week in Brussels, Members of the European parliament will debate the state of the ongoing negotiations between Parliament, Council and Commission on the climate change package. The package lays down the legislative measures needed to achieve the EU’s climate targets agreed by the March 2007 European Council for the year 2020: to cut the EU’s greenhouse gas emissions by 20%, to increase the share of renewable energies in the energy consumption to 20% and the share of biofuels to 10%.

This debate will include targeted reductions in greenhouse gas emissions for new cars (130g/km to be reached by improvements in vehicle motor technology, with a further 10g/km reduction to reach a 120g/km target, to be obtained by using other technical improvements such as better tires or the use of biofuels.

In line with Parliament’s resolution of 24 October 2007, MEPs agreed to set a long-term target of average emissions of no more than 95g CO2 per km from 1 January 2020, by means of improvement in vehicle motor technology.


Stew Dent

Aw... What happened to the um, cool story about the "cryogenic period" and how CO2 saved the world from "snowball earth" some 600 million years ago??

THAT was fun!

Henry Gibson

It was discovered centuries ago that the use of bio-fuels was insufficient for an industrialized society. Bio-nutrition is indeed insufficient in some areas. Bio-nutrition is severly insufficient in some area due to the demand and speculation in prices on organics used both for nutrition and now for biofuels. The use of organic crop residues is also suspect on two accounts. The first reason is that they are useful for enriching the soil and the second is that many of them can be changed into food by known processes including the digestion by goats.

It is now possible to construct carbon fuel burning vehicles that collect and save the C02. It is not very cost effective at the moment. It is more cost effective at the moment to collect CO2 at power plants. Germany in particular can convert many of its power plants to new ones that collect CO2 cost effectively. This CO2 can be shipped by pipeline to France where nuclear reactors can be used to process CO2 into methanol or ethanol. The methanol can be stored for decades if needed but is easily used directly as automobile fuel or converted into gasoline.

The very near term reduction of CO2 release from automobiles is to use plug-in-hybrid automobiles. Whilst it would be convenient to have the magic super battery it is far from necessary. Whilst many companies are promoting the latest and greatest lithium battery, so much so, that fuel cells are relegated to their deserved obscurity, even lead technology batteries are sufficient for well designed plug-in-hybrid cars. To keep up tradition, the ZEBRA battery must be mentioned; it is at least clear that its high price is matched by lithium, but its construction out of simple materials and robust temperature range and low combustability makes it much more effective right now. The low production volume and lack of competitive manufactures has kept the price high. The ZEBRA is well tested and proven to work in millions of miles of tests, but the main issue is not the battery but the fact that all cars should have a fuel powered engine in them, at least a small one, because they are weight efficient and the tanks are quickly refilled with nuclear methanol if necessary.

Small engine generators can be operated either at their most efficient speed or at their highest power speed. The speed and power of such small machines can be very high with careful design, and efficiency can be optimised with a single piston because low speed torque is not needed. At the other extreme, a relatively low efficiency microturbine is possible because with infrequent use, efficiency may not be a high necessity. In any case, hydrogen fueled vehicles are best fueled by methanol or gasoline from CO2 recycled with any available hydrogen.

Battery electric hybrid vehicles with on board small chargers eliminate any need for conversations about limited range and any need for fear of being caught with a dead battery. They also open the way for electrified highways and streets. There is no reason for buses that burn much fuel on city streets. Because of modern and old technology there are several ways to make charging conductors in the roadway sufficiently safe and reliable for street users and for charging battery busses at stops. There can be no question that such buses will also have fuel powered charging engines for exceptional circumstances. The batteries can also be large enough to go several miles even without any charging.

There is no reason to wait for any other batteries than ZEBRA batteries for such buses since buses always have a home to be kept charged at, and they can be kept charged at any stop, and they can be kept charged by the generator as a last resort.

Flywheels could be considered for high power surges for acceleration and regeneration at stops. The PARRY PEOPLE MOVERS have demonstrated that simple flywheels can be economical in such service. The Artemis hydraulic motor technology is also a candidate for such use. It is not widely known that low speed, large, light flywheels can be made of graphite fibers and other advanced materials for combination with hydraulic motors for energy storage in hydraulic hybrids. Stationary flywheels can be made cost effectively of cheaper heavier materials if weight and volume are not an issue. Ultra-capacitors are interesting, but energy content is very low. Which brings to mind the question if graphite fibers are better used to make tanks to contain compressed air energy storage or to make flywheels.

It is obvious that the lowest carbon energy for road vehicles is now nuclear electricity. However much wind and solar energy advocates pretend they are not, these sources are also very high cost carbon and nuclear energy. The sun and other stars bombard the people of the earth with far more nuclear radiation than all earth bound reactors could possibly do.

The Carlo Rubbia invention of the Accelerator Driven Reactor makes the cost of nuclear fuels very low and the amount available very high. At least 97 percent of the used fuel in used fuel rods can be reused in the Rubbia Reactor. This makes the cost of raw fuel for such reactors negative, since it is now considered waste by most people. Just the used rods could supply the US with fuel for over a hundred years at the present rate. The depleted uranium from enrichment plants now in storage could add two or three hundred years of operation. The Rubia Reactor can certainly use the much more abundant thorium.

It would probably be easier and faster to build a Rubia Reactor that burned lead than it would be to build a fusion reactor, but uranium and thorium are sufficiently abundant. One pound of uranium or thorium is large enough to supply all of the average energy needs of a person in Europe for over a hundred years, and this includes the indirect needs of industry. The fuel can also be the long lived transuranics such as all isotopes of plutonium that people are so worried about safely storing for millions of years. Pounds of them can be eliminated in a few days with Rubia Reactors. Each pound of fuel in a Rubia Reactor can produce 10,000,000 kilowatt hours of heat or at least a net of 2,000,000 kilowatt hours of electricity.

There is no difficulty at all to safely store fission products, but the high energy gamma rays might be able to more rapidly deactivate them. Neutrons have been proposed for deactivation, but they are also likely to create more radioactive materials and each neutron costs at least 100,000,000 electron volts of lost fission energy.

This is one of the falacies of fusion reactors where a neutron is used to produce only a maximum of 14 million electron volts of tritium fuel. It is also not widely known or published that working fusion reactors could produce more bomb plutonium at cheaper cost than fission reactors. The fusion reactor is the ultimate proliferation machine. It is also a reactor that can create more radioactive materials than it uses. The fission reactor actually eliminates radio-active materials.

Humans and all other live creatures have always lived with internal and external radio-activity, about 25 internal explosions per pound per second. There is little or no measurable danger to the very unmeasurable exposure to radiation caused by nuclear reactors which is, by the way, far less than the radiation exposure caused by burning coal or even natural gas.

Plug-In-Hybrid cars are the fastest and cheapest way of reducing carbon release by vehicles. This can be augmented by recycling CO2 from coal and gas fired power plants by making methanol with hydrogen derived from any low carbon source. In some rare places it may be that hydrogen could be produced by solar heat. The conversion of solar heat to electricity for automobile with stirling engines or even microturbines may be more cost effective. ..HG..

stas peterson

There once was a old parable about a fellow who created a rumor and spread it adroitly, expecting to profit from the resultant induced panic and hysteria.

He succeeded beyond his wildest dreams in getting a majority to believe his own completely fabricated nonsense. Just as he succeeded, and was about to make his killing investment, he paused, grew cautiosu and stopped.

He eventually joined the panicked mobs and did not profit from his carefully planned and self-created hysterical situation.

Later he lamented and said, "I followed the old proverb, 'Where there is smoke there is Fire', and grew cautious..."

Moral of the Story: the politicians and leftists, and their sycophants have continued to build the hyteria over a biologically necessary trace gas that has little power to alter the climate. They managed to sweep themselves into power as planned, amid the hysteria. And now in the moment of triumph, they have started to believe their own hysterical propaganda pronouncements and act on them. They are in the process of actually responding to their self-induced hysteria by actually trying to implement the crazy ideas that they promulgated.

I have news for you. You won. You succeeded. You got a majority of the unsophisticated, over-degreed and under-educated, scared about the non existent Global Warming. Even if there hasn't been any warming for more than a decade in the Northern hemisphere, and it never was Global,at all. Since the Southern half of the Planet has Never warmed at all during the period when CO2 traces amounts went up, and some portions of the Northern hemisphere did warm for two decades or so, ending in 1998.

Twenty-First Century Science has shown CO2 is unable to alter the Climate significantly. CO2 is just too weak,and too insignificant to do so.

Miskolczi's theories, developed in conjunction with satellite data, corroborated by much other empirical data, even speaks of a saturated GHG condition present on worlds such as Earth, that was created billions of years ago. Worlds with an essentially "infinite supply" of GHGs, the H20 liquid and gaseous oceans, not being possible to run away into a Global Warming calamity at all. And the new theories measure atmospheric results much better than conventional theories, ever do.

Quit while you are ahead. Start addressing real issues, instead of the phony ones dreamed up to support a change in people in power.

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