SWITCHING TO AN ELECTRIC CAR FROM 2030
Most people in the UK will have heard that from 2030 no new petrol or diesel cars can be sold. In the EU this may even reduce to 2025 with the Euro 7 emission rules.
Many people are confused and may stop buying a traditional gasoline (petrol) or diesel-powered vehicle for fear of the car having no access to fuel.
The reality is that diesel and gasoline will be around until at least 2045 as the average life of a vehicle is 15 years. If a new car is bought today, there are 24 years of fuel available for it.
IF I BUY A CAR THAT IS NOT ELECTRIC, WILL I BE DESTROYING THE ENVIRONMENT WITH THE FUEL EMISSIONS?
This is more complex as there are many factors that can help to reduce the emissions:
- How we drive
- The weather
- The tyre inflation
- The fuel choice
- The road conditions
- And more…
The weather and the road conditions are beyond our normal powers, but we can change driving style to use the accelerator less; we can check tyres regularly and we can select how we buy and where we buy fuel.
Some people genuinely believe that all fuel is the same as they have seen a supermarket tanker drive away from a fuel terminal belonging to an Oil Major. What is not seen is that within the terminal the operator can select what goes into the tanker, gasoline, with or without a gasoline additive or diesel with or without a diesel additive.
GASOLINE AND DIESEL DEVELOPMENTS
The standards for gasoline and diesel have hardly changed in Europe for years. In 2006 the sulphur content in diesel was reduced to 0.1% and since then the EU standards have largely remained the same. Reductions in emissions requirements, however, have forced changes in the engine design. A modern car today will probably have a direct injection system forcing fuel through tiny holes to increase the power the fuel can deliver. Therefore, engine sizes are now a lot smaller than 10 years ago; the engines are more efficient but the margin for error has greatly reduced too. A small growth of carbon in a 2cm wide fuel line hardly prevents the fuel from flowing but the same carbon in an 8-micron wide aperture can fully block the fuel’s flow. This is what fuel additives should be working on; keeping the fuel lines pristine and allowing the fuel to flow as if the engine were new.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF FUEL ADDITIVES?
Do fuel additives simply just clean the lines? Simply put, that is what happens but the benefits from this are great. Power can be restored. As we drive our cars each day, we won’t see it, but our cars lose power everyday over time but it’s a subtle gradual change we’ll never see or feel. But by restoring the power you can feel the difference. If the car works at its best it delivers fuel economy savings; if all test conditions are equalised a 4% fuel saving is common. In short you can save money by using less fuel, your car can perform faster and more efficiently, it has less chance of breaking down with a fuel fault just by using fuel with an additive.
BUT, WHAT ABOUT EMISSIONS?
If your fuel is burnt efficiently by maximising the performance of the engine the emissions are greatly reduced. There is a difference in the cost of the UK Road Tax licence based on the emissions levels. Less emissions means a reduced cost. The Governments of the world are pushing the Electric Vehicle (EV) agenda, this is costing vast sums of money to produce cars that cost more than a traditional one, require way more time to be filled up as they do not travel far and are not necessarily as ‘green ‘as we are led to believe. Large quantities of Cobalt and Lithiom-ion are needed to produce the batteries and they have approximately a 10-year life so every EV will need 2 in the life cycle of the vehicle! Whilst these batteries ARE recyclable current information is not able to advise the best use for the recycled batteries. To strip them down and reuse them safely is both very complicated and potentially hazardous, so is logically expensive. It is the inability to agree the best method for using the recycled batteries that causes concern as targets are set for the cessation of diesel and gasoline vehicles, but no clear strategy exists to replace them. The ecologic impact of mining cobalt from Africa and the risk to human rights to mine the materials do not comfort me. It takes around 7 tonnes of CO2 to produce a single battery as well as the rare precious metals that are mined. These materials are largely sourced from parts of the world not renowned for having the best record on human rights. Until a viable alternative to lithium is approved the EV is arguably less eco-friendly than the internal combustion engine provided the emissions from the ICE powered vehicle have been negated. Surely a small level of emissions which can even be offset by purchases of carbon tokens have to be considered a viable alternative to a total dependency on the EV for the next 3 decades? The use of fuel additives can and does grant this option.
In the meantime, happy motoring in the knowledge, you will not run short of fuel in your current vehicle.
Ian Bennett, Business Development Manager, Shrieve Products International Ltd.