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The Week in Sustainable Mobility (7/8/07)
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New Jersey became the third state in the US to enact a law mandating greenhouse gas reductions, the others being California and Hawai`i. To date, New Jersey’s is the most stringent. More...

California Governor Schwarzenegger appointed Mary Nichols as the new ARB Chair, replacing the fired Dr. Robert Sawyer. Sawyer and former ARB executive officer Catherine Witherspoon are charging that the governor’s top aides are seeking to soften greenhouse gas policy measures. More...


The Ontario government is making it mandatory for all large commercial vehicles to use speed limiters, according to Transportation Minister Donna Cansfield.

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Sales of new vehicles in Japan dropped to a 30-year low in June. More...

A report from the Royal Bank of Scotland notes that according to data from April 2007, production of crude oil in the UK has declined 12% during the previous 12 months. More...

The US Department of Energy recently awarded $12.8 million over three years to 13 research projects investigating the direct conversion of sunlight to chemical fuels. The awards were part of a larger $22.7 set of awards for basic solar energy research. More...

Shigeru Omi, WHO’s regional director for the Western Pacific, proposed greater use of bicycles, the use of clean energy sources, and tax incentives to reduce carbon emissions.

HYBRIDS and PLUG-IN HYBRIDS

GM’ 2008 Malibu Hybrid made its debut at Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game. More...

Ford and Edison International will announce a joint electric transportation initiative designed to explore ways to advance plug-in hybrid technology for the US market. More...

ELECTRIC VEHICLES

The Makati City (Philippines) government, GRIPP (Green Renewable Independent Power Producer), and Greenpeace launched a pair of electric jeepneys (E-Jeepneys) into service trials. Makati City is the financial hub of the Philippines. More...


ENERGY STORAGE SYSTEMS

Sustainable Development Technology Canada is funding a project led by Advanced Lithium Power Inc. to build, test and demonstrate a production-ready lithium-ion battery pack for hybrids. More...

Maxwell Technologies Inc. has obtained a non-exclusive worldwide license from Enercon GmbH of Aurich, Germany, for a patent covering the use of ultracapacitors in wind energy systems, including use as backup power source for wind turbine blade pitch systems. More...

BIOFUELS

Agricultural policies should focus more on developing and rewarding sustainable, multifunctional landscapes that benefit both varied commodity production and the environment, and less on merely maximizing crop yield, according to a policy forum article in a recent edition of the journal Science. More...

The European Commission held a two-day International Conference on Biofuels in Brussels. The goal of the conference was to launch a discussion about developing an international approach that would reap the benefits of biofuels, while ensuring sustainable development and avoiding the creation of new risks. More...

India is likely to have a national biofuels policy in place in several months. The program will mandate a 5% renewable component in fuels by 2012, increasing to 10% by 2017, with higher levels to come thereafter. More...

Galp Energia, Portugal’s leading oil and gas company, and Brazil’s Petrobras (Petróleo Brasileiro, S.A.) are creating a joint venture for the annual production of 600,000 tonnes of vegetable oils in Brazil as well as the production, marketing and distribution of biofuels in the Portuguese and European markets. More...

Blue Diamond Ventures has formed a strategic alliance with Texas A&M University, whereby the University will serve as its technical assistance partner in Belize. More...

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced ecoENERGY for Biofuels, which will provide C$1.5 billion (US$1.4 billion, €1.1 billion) in incentives over nine years to producers of renewable alternatives to gasoline and diesel fuel. More...

The state of Georgia has awarded Range Fuels a construction permit to build a 100-million-gallon-per-year cellulosic ethanol plant that will use wood waste from Georgia’s forests as its feedstock. More...

Sustainable Development Technology Canada is funding a project led by Woodland Biofuels Inc. to build a demonstration facility to efficiently produce cellulosic ethanol from wood waste using Woodland’s patented Catalyzed Pressure Reduction technology, which also can be used to convert a broad range of renewable biomass materials into sustainable fuels.

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Catilin, a start-up funded by Mohr Davidow Ventures, is seeking to commercialize a mesoporous silica nanosphere (MSN)-based catalyst developed by researchers at Iowa State University that could make the production of biodiesel less expensive, faster, and more flexible with respect to feedstock oils. More...

Mohr Davidow Ventures (MDV) has invested in ZeaChem, the developer of a combined biochemical and thermochemical process for the production of ethanol from cellulosic biomass feedstocks. ZeaChem claims that its technology will produce 50% more ethanol per ton of feed than the current best-in-class technology.

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HYDROGEN

The US Department of Energy’s Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) recently achieved a milestone in the development of the Hybrid Sulfur Process for nuclear hydrogen production. More...

ECOtality recently acquired Fuel Cell Store, an online retailer for the fuel cell industry. More...

NATURAL GAS AND LPG

Iran’s Ministry for Industry and Mines has set new rules for Iranian automakers to shift from gasoline to CNG as the fuel for their cars. More... Iran Khodro Company (IKCO) will begin the production of dual-fuel gasoline-compressed natural gas cars in late July. IKCO is the largest vehicle manufacturer in Iran and the Middle East, and builds cars and commercial vehicles for domestic use and for export. More...

Hyundai Motor India (HMI), the second largest passenger car manufacturer in India and its largest exporter of automobiles, added a dual-fuel gasoline-CNG variant to its Santro range. More...

Guangzhou, China, the host of the 2010 Asian Games, will have all its buses and taxis running on LPG by 2010. Eight-five percent the city’s buses and taxis (6,500 and 16,000 respectively) are already converted to LPG. The city now has the most LPG-fueled vehicles in the world. More...

DIESEL

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is making more than $1.3 million available for clean diesel school bus projects as part of the West Coast Collaborative and Clean School Bus USA programs. More...

Isuzu Motors and Hino Motors, the Toyota commercial vehicle subsidiary, are teaming up to develop technology for diesel engine emissions reduction. More...

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has implemented revised idling regulations that eliminate most of the exemptions that allowed diesel vehicles to idle for longer than three minutes. More...

In a fuel consumption test carried out under real traffic conditions while driving from Istanbul, Turkey to Antalya and back, a Peugeot 407 1.6 HDi diesel model consumed 3.68 l/100km of fuel (64 mpg US). More...

The DaimlerChrysler Truck Group has posted more than 100,000 orders for Blue-Tec trucks since Mercedes-Benz introduced the urea SCR diesel emissions control system in early 2005. More...

BMW has expanded its 1 Series with a new Coupé model that offers a new all-aluminum, twin-turbo 2.0-liter diesel with an output per liter figure in excess of 100 hp. The engine offer fuel consumption of 4.8 l/100km (49 mpg US) and CO2 emissions of 128 g/km. More...

A Dutch researcher has developed a reaction model describing the activity of new NOx Storage Reduction (NSR) catalytic converters used in conjunction with diesel or lean-burn gasoline engines. The model supports the development of a controller for the engine and emissions aftertreatment systems to optimize fuel consumption and NOx control. More...

OTHER

Fiat presented its much-anticipated new Fiat 500 at an evening launch party on 4 July in Turin, Italy, 50 years after the introduction of the first Fiat 500. The iconic Cinquecento (500) has been out of production for 32 years. More...

Mazda Motor Corporation launched the fully redesigned Mazda Demio (known overseas as the Mazda2). With a new 1.3-liter Miller cycle engine, the new Demio achieves 10-15 mode fuel efficiency of 23.0 km/L (4.35 l/100km or 54 mpg US). This represents an improvement of approximately 20% over the previous Demio model. More...

The Chrysler Group and China’s Chery Automobile have finalized their cooperative agreement which will result in the first imports of Chinese-manufactured cars into the US under the aegis of a major automaker. Under the agreement, Chrysler and Chery will work together to develop, manufacture and distribute Chery-made small and sub-compact cars in North America, Europe and other major automotive markets under the Chrysler Group brands. More...

Toyota has launched the completely redesigned Voxy and Noah minivans in Japan. The second-generation models mark the first applications of a newly developed 2.0-liter engine (3ZR-FAE) using the Valvematic variable valve lift mechanism with Dual VVT-i (Dual Variable Valve Timing-intelligent) which optimizes both intake and exhaust valve timing.

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SAIC-GM-Wuling (SGMW), GM’s mini-vehicle joint venture in the southern Chinese city of Liuzhou, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, inaugurated its new RMB 2 billion (US$263 million) 300,000-unit engine plant. The facility is scheduled to officially begin production of 1.1-liter and 1.2-liter engines in August. More...

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