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The Week in Sustainable Mobility (5/20/07)
Mike Millikin, 20 May 07
Article Photo

US President George Bush today issued an executive order directing the Environmental Protection Agency and the Departments of Agriculture, Energy and Transportation to work together to begin developing regulations that will reduce gasoline consumption and greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles, using the President’s 20-in-10 plan as a starting point. More...

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing criteria for certifying vehicles as clean and energy efficient to guide states that choose to allow such vehicles in high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes even when the vehicles have only one occupant. More...

The US Environmental Protection Agency has scheduled two public hearings in May of 2007 to take public comments on the California Air Resources Board’s 21 December 2005 request to implement a greenhouse gases reduction measure for motor vehicles. More...

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, in partnership with the Los Angeles City Council and environmental leaders, unveiled GREEN LA—An Action Plan to Lead the Nation in Fighting Global Warming. More...

Mayors and business executives from around the world are meeting in New York this week for the C40 Large Cities Climate Summit to discuss actions and projects to tackle climate change, including the reduction of transportation congestion. More...

Transport for London (TfL) has launched a new effort to help small- and medium- sized businesses (SMB) in London reduce their employees’ car use. More...

DaimlerChrysler announced that it will sell 80.1% of what was the Chrysler Group to Cerebus Capital management, a private equity firm, for €5.5 billion (US$7.4 billion). More ...

Obvio! Automotoveiculos S.A., the Brazilian automaker that builds microsports cars that run on gasoline, natural gas, or ethanol, or any combination of the three, in addition to offering an electric model, will contribute a portion of each car’s purchase price to a fund to offset its carbon footprint. More...

European automakers need at least three additional years prior to the implementation of a legislative framework mandating reductions in CO2 from cars, according to Sergio Marchionne, President of the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) and CEO of Fiat. More...

The International Energy Agency (IEA) is cautioning that switching from fuel oil to cleaner, less polluting marine diesel in ship engines would result in a net increase in global carbon dioxide emissions, require billions in refinery investments and could boost oil prices. More...

HYBRIDS and PLUG-IN HYBRIDS

King County, Washington today awarded New Flyer Industries a contract for the purchase of up to 500 articulated buses, most of which will be powered by General Motors’ 2-mode hybrid system. The five-year contract could be worth as much as $400 million. More...

Scania will introduce its ethanol-fueled hybrid bus concept at the UITP public transport congress in Helsinki 21-24 May 2007. The full-size low-floor city bus is designed to cut fossil CO2 emissions by up to 90% when running on the ethanol blend and reduce fuel consumption by at least 25%. More...

FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp., has contracted with Azure Dynamics Corp. for the development of gasoline parallel hybrid-electric powertrains for its delivery fleet. More...

The Pete Store has delivered a Peterbilt Model 386 Hybrid—the first Class 8 hybrid truck of its kind—to Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. More...

Valeo is developing a supercapacitor-based extension to its award-winning StARS stop-start system to support regenerative braking and thus enable a greater reduction in fuel consumption than is possible with the stop-start system alone.

More...

The Ogden, Utah police force is adding Ford Escape Hybrid SUVs as patrol vehicles. More...

National Car Rental in the UK will now offer the Prius as a rental option. More...

ELECTRIC CARS

A recently published study in the journal Policy Sciences compares the differences in approach and policy-making styles taken in the 1990s by California and France to improve urban air quality by promoting clean vehicles, specifically electric vehicles (EVs).More...

ENERGY STORAGE SYSTEMS

A123Systems introduced its automotive-class, large-format 32-series Li-Ion cells specifically designed for Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV) and Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) use at the Advanced Automotive Battery Conference 2007 in Long Beach, California. More...

Cobasys has supplied its NiMHax Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) battery systems for integration into heavy-duty hybrid-electric trucks developed by Armor Holdings, Inc. for the US Army. More...

Maxwell Technologies, Inc. will supply ultracapacitor cells and integration kits to the US Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory for a collaborative research project to assemble and evaluate an integrated ultracapacitor/lithium-ion battery energy storage system for hybrid-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles. More...

Lithium Technology Corporation (LTC) has introduced a new product line of large-format lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4) cells, the largest cells of their kind in the world. LTC is targeting these directly toward the automotive industry for use in electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. More...

Magna Steyr, the vehicle engineering, assembly and component provider, is developing a series of lithium-ion energy storage systems for a range of hybrid electric vehicle applications including mild (10-30kW); full (30-70kW—also for use with a fuel cell vehicle); and heavy duty (70-200 kW). More...

The United States Advanced Battery Consortium (USABC), composed of DaimlerChrysler Corporation, Ford Motor Company and General Motors Corporation, recently issued a request for proposal information (RFPI) for advanced high-performance battery development for plug-in hybrid-electric vehicle (PHEV) applications.

More...

Dr. Menahem Anderman, the President of Advanced Automotive Batteries, projects that lithium-ion battery sales may capture 5% of the hybrid and electric vehicle market by 2010, 17% by 2012 and 36% by 2015. A corollary forecast is that plug-in hybrids—assuming that lithium-ion chemistries are required for those applications—are unlikely to reach commercial volumes (more than 20,000 units per year) by 2015. More...

At a panel session at the Advanced Automotive Battery and Ultracapacitor Conference (AABC) this week in Long Beach, California, directors and managers of advanced battery systems from GM and from Ford provided some insight into automakers’ requirements for lithium-ion battery technology to enter the automotive business. More...

BIOFUELS

A team of University of Georgia (UGA) researchers has developed an enhanced pyrolysis-derived bio-oil from pine wood chips. The new and still-unnamed fuel can be blended with biodiesel and petroleum diesel to power conventional engines. More...

Arizona-based XL Dairy Group is building a biorefinery that combines a dairy operation with a biofuels plant and fractionation mill to produce ethanol, biodiesel, milk and dairy products, and animal feed, along with 100% of the energy required to run the plant.

More...

The Indian Railways will run their diesel locomotives on biodiesel, starting with a 10% B10 blend and moving to B20. More...

HYDROGEN

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced $11.2 million in awards for research aimed at overcoming the scientific challenges associated with the production, storage and use of hydrogen.

More...

GM’s Chevy Sequel has become the first electrically-driven fuel-cell vehicle to achieve 300 miles on one tank of hydrogen, in and out of traffic on public roads. More...

Van Hool and UTC Power have introduced Belgium’s first 13.2-meter (43-foot) fuel-cell hybrid-electric transit bus with a passenger capacity of 104.

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Hydrogenics Corporation has received an order for a fuel cell auxiliary power unit from MAN Nutzfahrzeuge AG, one of Europe’s largest manufacturers of commercial trucks, urban buses, coaches, intercity buses and bus chassis. More...

Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide will acquire a 24.9% equity stake in a German solar energy technology company that develops and manufactures high-efficiency photovoltaic modules for a number of applications targeting the automotive, residential, and commercial sectors. Quantum sees the acquisition as synergistic with its hydrogen storage systems and lithium-ion battery systems.

More...


Southern California Edison (SCE) has requested state regulatory approval to conduct the nation’s first feasibility assessment of Clean Hydrogen Power Generation (CHPG) in a full-scale, 600 MW commercial generating facility.
More...

BP and Rio Tinto have formed a new jointly-owned company, Hydrogen Energy, which will develop “decarbonized” energy projects around the world. The venture will initially focus on hydrogen-fueled power generation, using fossil fuels and carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology. More...

Creative Commons Photo Credit

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