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What to do about G7, what to do about eFuel?

The G7 summit will finally be held in Hiroshima tomorrow, starting on the 19th. Various issues facing the international community, such as the situation in Ukraine and economic security, will be discussed.

Prior to this, at the G7 Climate/Energy/Environment Ministerial Meeting held in Sapporo on 15-16 April, the G7 Ministers will “assess the development of technologies such as fuel cell vehicles, plug-in hybrid vehicles and low-carbon and carbon-neutral fuels including biofuels and synthetic fuels” as a way to decarbonise the road sector. The meeting included language such as.

The EU’s post-2035 light-duty vehicle CO2 regulation also partially accepts ‘carbon neutral fuels’, and the topic of synthetic fuels (eFuel) is gaining momentum worldwide.
On the other hand, voices are heard here and there saying that ‘eFuel is only a niche’, ‘the global trend is completely BEVs’ and ‘Japan is Galapagos again (laughs)’.

Electric vehicles (BEVs) are becoming increasingly popular worldwide with the aim of achieving a carbon-neutral society by 2050-2060. Some countries and regions have set out policies to ban the sale of new engine vehicles in the future. However, there are many regions of the world where electrification will continue to be difficult due to economic conditions and charging infrastructure problems. Even if all new car sales were to be zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs), more than one billion vehicles owned and sold up to that point would still be left behind from decarbonisation. In other words, to achieve a carbon-neutral society, it is essential to provide decarbonisation technologies for the vehicles already in the fleet. Synthetic fuel (eFuel), a fuel derived from renewable energy sources, is the most promising solution to decarbonise non-ZEVs.

eFuel is also promising in terms of the effective use of renewable energy (renewable energy). Even in regions where electrification of mobility is high, not all electricity is provided by renewable energy. In fact, the more such regions have a shortage of renewable energy. Renewable energy is more abundant in remote parts of the world, and needs to be brought from there. Electricity cannot be stored and the costs of transmission lines are astronomical. This is exactly the idea behind Porsche’s project in Chile, South America.

While public awareness of eFuel is growing, reports of various issues and shortcomings are also becoming more prominent: will eFuel really come or not, and if so, when and to what extent? Based on these multifaceted perspectives, we intend to reorganise where eFuel is now and what the future prospects are for eFuel.