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The Week in Sustainable Mobility (7/23/06)

taxi.jpg Mike Millikin covers the ongoing evolution of sustainable mobility at Green Car Congress.

Ford Motor Company reported a net loss of $123 million for the second quarter of 2006—results worse than expected. Ford CEO Bill Ford attributed the unanticipated loss to external factors including the price of commodities, fuel, and the rapid market shift away from trucks and SUVs. (More...)

Ford Land Rover UK has introduced a wide-ranging pilot CO2 offset program—the largest and most comprehensive program of its kind yet undertaken by an automotive manufacturer in the UK. The program has two key components: offsetting emissions generated by Land Rover vehicle assembly at its two production facilities in Britain; and providing a mechanism for customers to offset emissions from the use of their vehicle. (More...)

Ford Motor in the UK will spend at least £1 billion (US$1.8 billion) to develop a range of global environmental technologies in the UK for its Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo brands. The project is designed to deliver more than 100 models and derivatives that reduce fuel consumption and carbon emissions, including for example, a regular Ford Focus capable of more than 58 miles per gallon US (70 mpg Imperial) and CO2 emissions of less than 100 g/km. (More...)

China’s petroleum imports rose 15.6% to 73.33 million tons (579 million barrels) of crude oil in the first half of 2006 from the year before, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). (More...)

Model year 2006 vehicles offer an average estimated fuel economy rating of 21.0 mpg. This average is the same as last year and in the middle of the 20.6 to 21.4 mpg range that has occurred for the past fifteen years, and five percent below the 1987 to 1988 peak of 22.1 mpg, according to the EPA’s report Light-Duty Automotive Technology and Fuel Economy Trends: 1975 Through 2006. (More...)

Following the first working session of the G8 summit in St. Petersburg, the group of eight leaders adopted a document on energy security that—among the other principles it embraced—emphasized diversification of energy supply and demand and energy sources; energy saving and energy efficiency measures on both national and international levels; and deployment and transfer of clean energy technologies which help to tackle climate change. Transportation received specific mention and its own section of the plan. (More...)

The City of London has implemented new, stricter emissions standards that apply to the entire taxi fleet. Taxis are currently estimated to be responsible for 18% of the NOx and 34% of the PM10 road transport emissions in central London. (More...)

World cereal end-of-season stocks are expected to decline 10% in 2006, due to a slight 1% decrease in global cereal output and growth in utilization, according to the latest forecast of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Increased demand is expected to be driven by a recovery in feed use due to a rebound in poultry consumption. In addition, the growing demand for ethanol is likely to boost industrial use of coarse grains, particularly maize, especially in the United States and in China. (More...)


GM is unveiling a new version of the Saab BioPower Hybrid that incorporates an application of the two-mode hybrid transmission GM is co-developing with DaimlerChrysler and BMW Group. An earlier version of the E100-capable flex-fuel hybrid featured a 300-volt Li-ion battery pack, a 38kW rear-mounted electric motor (rear drive unit—RDU), a 15 kW integrated starter/generator (ISG) and all-wheel-drive with electric power transmission to the rear wheels. It was also widely believed to incorporate the capability for plug-in recharging, although GM/Saab declined to confirm that. (More...)

In a speech before the National Press Club in Washington, DC, Jim Press, president of Toyota Motor North America said that Toyota is pursuing a plug-in hybrid vehicle. He also said that the company is strongly considering introducing flex-fuel vehicles for the US. (More...)

DaimlerChrysler will bring a Mercedes S-Class gasoline-electric mild hybrid to the market by the beginning of 2008, according to DaimlerChrysler Board Member Dr. Thomas Weber. (More...)


Azure Dynamics Corporation has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the production of series-hybrid shuttle buses with StarTrans, a business division of Supreme Corporation and one of North America’s leading commercial bus manufacturers. (More...)

New Flyer Industries has closed orders for 465 buses in North America, of which 381 are firm orders and 84 are options, representing a total of approximately US $181.8 million in revenue. Of those, 84 are diesel-electric hybrids (18%) and 51 are CNG-fueled (11%). (More...)


MEGA, part of the AIXAM-MEGA Group, launched The MEGA-CITY electric city car in collaboration with the NICE (no internal combustion engine) Car Company, at the British International Motor Show. Powered by a 4 kW motor and an 8.2 kWh AGM lead-acid battery pack, the two-seat MEGA CITY has a top speed of more than 40 mph and has a range of up to 50 miles on flat roads at a constant speed, or 38 miles on mixed roads. Recharge time is 8 hours. (More...)

DaimlerChrysler UK announced the first four corporate partners for the market trial of the all-electric smart ev. In addition, the company announced that it is working on mitigation and offset plans through which all carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions generated through the production process and the logistics chain of the smart ev will be measured, reduced where possible and the remaining unavoidable emissions offset through a mixture of renewable energy, energy efficiency and forestry projects. (More...)

Tesla Motors unveiled its much-anticipated all-electric two-seater roadster. The lithium-ion battery powered sportscar features a 248hp (185 kW) electric motor that accelerates the car from 0 to 60 in four seconds. Built by Lotus for Tesla, the Roadster has a range of about 250 miles and a top speed of 130 mph. The car goes on sale in select areas in 2007. (More...)

Brazilian automotive company OBVIO! is developing lithium-ion-powered electric cars based on its 828 and 012 microsport car designs (earlier post) for export to North America. The preliminary specifications for the OBVIO! electric cars include a range of 200 to 240 miles, with acceleration from 0 to 60 mph of less than 4.5 seconds and a top speed of 120 mph. A 39 kWh lithium-ion battery system will power the 120 kW (160 hp), 220 Nm (162 lb-ft) electric motor. Pricing is estimated to be about half that of the Tesla Roadster. (More...)


Two DuPont research leaders provided an update on the company’s strategy to develop next-generation biofuels at the third annual World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology and Bioprocessing. (More...)

GS CleanTech Corporation, formerly named Veridium, has executed an agreement with an Arkansas-based poultry processing facility to extract more than one million pounds per year of poultry fat from the facility’s waste streams for conversion into a biodiesel feedstock using GS CleanTech’s proprietary animal fat recycling and conversion technologies. (More...)

Malaysia and Indonesia—the world’s top palm oil producers—are allocating about 40% of their combined crude palm oil output for biodiesel production, according to a statement from Malaysia’s Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities. The 12 million tonnes of palm oil designated for biofuel represents about 3.5 billion gallons. (More...)

PTT Public Company, Thailand’s state-owned oil firm, and Charoen Pokphand Group (CP), a leading agro-industrial and foods conglomerate, have signed an initial agreement for the development, production and promotion of palm-oil biodiesel. (More...)

An international consortium including Maui Land & Pineapple Company, Grove Farm Company, Kamehameha Schools and venture capitalist Vinod Khosla formed Hawai‘i BioEnergy, LLC to research the viability of renewable energy crops, products and services in the state of Hawai‘i. (More...)

At the recent Forum for Future Energies in Berlin, Volkswagen, Shell and the engineering company Lurgi proposed a fuel duty model based on CO2 efficiency and sustainability criteria as an alternative to the planned quotas. The companies hope that such an approach would boost the development of second-generation biofuels such as biomass-to-liquids (BTL) synthetic fuels.(More...)

Syntec Biofuels, a spin-off from the University of British Columbia, is gearing up to enter the second-generation biofuels market with a set of proprietary catalysts that produce ethanol from the syngas resulting from the gasification of biomass. (More...)

Nissan will produce the Armada full-size SUV as an E85 flex-fuel vehicle beginning in 2007. The 2007 E85 full-size SUV Armada will have a 5.6-liter V8 engine, offer three-row, eight-passenger seating and up to 9,100-pound maximum towing capacity. The gasoline version of the Armada offers fuel economy of 13 mpg US city, 19 mpg US highway, and 15 mpg US combined. (More...)

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. (More...)


The state-owned BVG (Berliner Verkehrsbetriebe), Berlin’s mass-transit company, will buy up to 250 hydrogen buses by 2009. At that figure, roughly one out of every five buses in the city would be hydrogen-fueled. (More...)

Ford has kicked off production of its dedicated hydrogen-fueled 6.8-liter V-10 engines, making it the first automaker in the world to do so. The engine is based on the same modular engine series that powers many Ford products, but is specially prepared to burn hydrogen as a fuel. The supercharged V-10 engine will power Ford’s E-450 hydrogen fueled shuttle buses. (More...)

Three prototype tri-fuel (hydrogen, E85, gasoline) internal combustion engine (ICE) Chevy Silverados, converted by AFVTech, are on display at the North Dakota State Fair. The vehicles are part of a DOE-sponsored Wind Hydrogen project, which uses wind-generated electricity to power an electrolyzer for the production of hydrogen. (More...)

Volkswagen AG has joined the Clean Energy Partnership (CEP) (earlier post), increasing the hydrogen demonstration project’s membership to 11 companies and 17 hydrogen vehicles. (More...)

Hydrogenics Corporation has received orders for four HyPM Fuel Cell Power Packs for STILL International, a wholly-owned company of Linde AG, the market leader in Europe for electric forklifts. Two Fuel Cell Power Packs (FCPP) will be integrated into STILL Class 1 forklifts, and two will be integrated into two airport tow tractor vehicles. (More...)

Toyota Motor (TMC) and Hino announced that the hydrogen fuel-cell hybrid FCHV-BUS, which operated on public routes in mid-March around the Central Japan International Airport (Centrair) south of Nagoya (earlier post), is to renew operation on 22 July, including expanded service to and within the airport. (More...)


Peabody Energy and Rentech, Inc. have entered into a joint development agreement to evaluate sites in the Midwest and Montana for coal-to-liquids projects that would transform coal into diesel and jet fuel. The plants could range in size from producing 10,000 to 30,000 barrels of fuel per day (bpd). A 10,000 bpd plant would use 2 to 3 million tons of coal annually, and a 30,000 bpd plant would use 6 to 9 million tons of coal annually, based on the quality of coal. (More...)

The Chinese government has issued a circular on regulating the coal-chemical industry, urging local governments to tighten control of new projects. The government will not approve coal liquefaction (Coal-to-Liquids) projects with an annual production capacity of less than three million tons; coal to methanol or dimethyl ether (DME) projects of less than one million tons; and coal-to-alkene projects of less than 600,000 tons. (More...)


Several major automakers, including Maruti Udyog, Tata, Ford India, and Hyundai, are expanding their line-up or introducing their first-time offerings of alternative-fueled cars in the Indian market. (More...)

Westport Innovations and Beijing Tianhai Industry Co. have formed a 50:50 owned, independent joint venture company—BTIC Westport (BWI)—to market liquefied natural gas (LNG) fuel tanks for medium- and heavy-duty transportation applications. (More...)


The Delhi Cabinet is mandating that all two-stroke three wheelers—regardless of fuel—convert to four-stroke engines in an effort to reduce pollution in the city. (More...)

Robert Bosch Corporation and Ricardo plc are jointly developing an advanced turbo-charged, direct injection gasoline engine system. The prototype system, DI BOOST, will offer superior performance and fuel economy while also being capable of achieving super ultra low emission vehicle (SULEV) standards. (More...)

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thanks for the update!!

Posted by: CleverGirl on 23 Jul 06



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