First level mistake of the EU climate experts

In "Old Europe" the cars we are focusing on here have been fueling "natural gas". Natural gas contains methane of fossil origin, just like oil or coal.   

An Audi A5 fuelled with natural gas emits 95 grams of fossil CO2/km.

In modern Europe, we are seeing a development lead by Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway and the UK, where recycling of organic farm waste provides methane of another origin, bio-methane. Bio-methane is non-fossil.The result is that... 

an Audi A5 fuelled with bio-methane emits no fossil CO2/km. Zero.



Clarification methane/CO2: A methane fuelled car does not emit methane. It emits CO2. Why? Because when ignited in a combustion engine, methane turns into carbon dioxide (CO2) and water.

The current EU classification of these cars ignores this fact.

Consequence: 2021 this means that Audi has to pay 9025 Euros for each new A5 Sportback g-tron based on a fictive 95 Euro per gram fossil CO2/km it emits. While in reality, driving it in Sweden on 100% bio-methane produced from waste results in this car emitting 0 grams fossil CO2/km.

"Tough luck for Audi",
you might think

Well, not just for Audi. Tough luck and seriously bad business for truly green investments in the EU. + for a wide range of EU Climate Targets.


Click "Green Investment Loop" to jump straight to the summary of why

 Back to the subject of Cars and Cutting climate emissions


 

Next level knowledge:

"Well-to-Wheel" 

   

 

Singling out the climate perspective on this, there is a next level of knowledge, the so called Well-to-Wheel (WTW) pespective. This perspective calculates the entire climate effect of both producing and using the fuel. In the case described in the film, Hagelsrum Biogas, this reduction is 128%.
 

   Californian WTW numbers

In October 2017, the California Air Resorces Board, CARB, released calculations on Climate Indexes when using different fuels available in California. A positive C.I means the fuel production and use contributes to the climate problem, a C.I. below zero means that the Well-to-Wheel net effect reduces the climate problem. The graphic uses numbers from the report describilng biomethane produced from cow manure. Incentives based on this knowledge has lead to the entire Californian methane powered truck fleet reaching net carbon less than zero in November 2020.

Example: Weel-To-Wheel calculations, California Air Resources Board, Oct 2017.

 EMissions of FOSSIL CO2/km Natural gas vs biomethane, wtw


Summary

 

1. European car manufacturers are world leaders in developing and producing cars fueled by methane.

2. Green investments in recycling technology for organic waste at farms and in cities cuts emissions from this waste. It also makes available non fossil methane, bio-methane. Methane combusted in an engine is transformed into water and carbon dioxide, CO2.

3. When combining the cars and this new fuel, the cars no longer emit fossil CO2. They become Zero Carbon vehicles.

4. When including the climate benefits of the fuel production in the calculation ("Well to Wheel"), the net effect of the system can be more than 100% °° 



°°Confirmed in the Science for Policy report (JEC2 Well-To-Wheels report v55) by the Joint Research Centre (JRC), the European Commission’s science and knowledge service. Page 45 and 62 and in the RED Renewable Energy Directive, RED II, page 92. 

None of this i recognized by the DG Clima experts.

Result: an unnecessary obstacle in reaching EU climate targets in time

If you are eager to see the connection, jump to "Green Investment Loop".