A change in the future
My “doom and gloom” editorial last month about the demise of the internal combustion engine may have been a bit early. Bosch in Germany has revealed that new synthetic liquid fuels which would run in today’s engines have the effect of making the engine carbonneutral, and in fact the manufacture of these new fuels would have the effect of “sucking” excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
Bosch calculates that the new fuel process, powered by renewable electricity, could reduce the carbon emissions in Europe alone by 2.8 gigatons, which is three times Germany’s carbon emissions in 2016. Read more on page 33.
Extrapolate this globally, particularly in high use countries such as America and China, and suddenly the world will be a much cleaner place!
It won’t happen overnight, of course, and it will have to be used in conjunction with electrification where possible, but what it means is that the future for the internal combustion engine is still bright.
Add to that continuous refinement of the ICE itself, as witnessed by Mazda’s amazing new SkyActiv engine, and maybe we can stop crying into our beer and get on with an interesting (and petrolhead) future! And on top of all that, it makes use of existing filling station infrastructure, without requiring additional refuel stations as hydrogen and electric powered cars would, and won’t require retraining in the repair and service industry. You can read about this on page 14.
No future for leaded fuel
On a different tack, I was asked to sign a petition the other day, in support of a protest about the proposed banning of leaded fuel in Australia, on the basis that it would have a devastating effect on motor racing, and particularly classic cars.
What nonsense! New Zealand hasn’t had leaded petrol for decades now, yet we have a vibrant and thriving classic motor sport sector, both racing and rallying, as well as one of the world’s best populations of hot rods.
Fact is, additives are freely available to sort out any problems unleaded may cause to a classic engine, they are not prohibitively expensive, and quite honestly, I don’t see what the Aussie fuss is all about!