Comments on: Truck makers push back against EU’s first ever CO2 limits https://www.euractiv.com/section/transport/news/truck-makers-push-back-against-eus-first-ever-co2-limits/ EU news and policy debates across languages Tue, 28 Aug 2018 21:11:12 +0000 hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.5 By: reupdate.info https://www.euractiv.com/section/transport/news/truck-makers-push-back-against-eus-first-ever-co2-limits/#comment-335596 Tue, 28 Aug 2018 11:01:39 +0000 https://www.euractiv.com/?post_type=news&p=1265550#comment-335596 We all know that the only option for trucking is hydrogen fuel cells. Now; as I have just explained elsewhere, co-opting batteries is the usual excuse for those who want absolutely no change to the status quo and are confident that decarbonisation is never going to happen – certainly not via battery-powered trucks.

A recent Canadian report outlines the situation well:

“Negatives such as lengthy charging times, the weight of batteries, and an inability to travel long distances, were reasons fully electric trucks were not seen by CESAR as being the best option for Canada as a whole.”

The weight is 2.5 times that of a traditional semi truck, and that is is only for 800km which is half the distance of a diesel or hydrogen version. And the charging time is 5-6 hours using a fast-charger, meaning a lot of space required for multiple vehicles at the same time.

What the Commission and Transport & Environment are doing are trying to avoid hydrogen because much of their funding comes from powerful lobby groups who would prefer if this never happens.

But hydrogen makes perfect sense, and fits perfectly with trucking – highlighting the fact this is a direct affront to accepted wisdom on the subject.

The Commission spends a few billion in direct subsidies to biofuels every year, famously reaching almost €10 billion back in 2011 (euractiv .com/section/energy/opinion/how-eu-subsidies-inflate-biofuel-prices/). Nothing like this amount of money goes to any serious kind of decarbonisation; that being primarily hydrogen.

Fully one-third of Europe’s biofuel is imported palm oil which is 3 times as emissions intensive as traditional fossil fuel, and has now been mandated by the Commission right up to 2030, after an initial review of the situation earlier in the year (when there was actually some talk of limiting use of the ‘fuel’).

Some details: gain.fas.usda .gov/Recent%20GAIN%20Publications/Biofuels%20Annual_The%20Hague_EU-28_7-3-2018.pdf

So: any sane person knows burning down rainforests in Indonesia to grow palm oil for EU transport use is plainly a bad idea. The massive subsidies only aggravate matters; *considering there are genuine alternatives*.

And so I will outline briefly what a little under just *one* billion buys when the EU Commission and its many subsidiaries are not corrupt fraudsters, cheating us and ultimately life on Earth now that time has run out. But anyway.

Nikola have signed a deal with Nel Hydrogen ASA for 1 GW of electrolysers and refuelling equipment. This will equate to approximately 700 refuelling stations, and Nel have already started work on the manufacturing facility; which will have an output of 360MW of electrolysis per year. This is similar to Thyssenkrupps 600MW of hydrogen electrolyser manufacturing facility, although certainly the second biggest in the world. The trucks have numerous orders ($8 billion in pre-orders, with all deposits now paid back), will have a range of 1,800km and fuel will officially cost between $5-6 per kg, which is a 20% cost saving. This would be a lot more in the EU.

So that fact that both Transport & Environment and the Commission are simply burning biofuels, right up to 2030 despite the fact we all know its worse that fossil fuels, says a lot. It says to me there are ‘special interests’ at work.

And a further few notes on the subject of hydrogen within transport. Japan, Korea, and China all have extensive plans to decarbonise via hydrogen. They are not using batteries because

a) Teslas has never made any money, in 15 years: “Given that Tesla has never made an annual profit in the almost 15 years since we have existed, profit is obviously not what motivates us” – Elon Musk

b) As the vice president for Hyundai R&D explains, the problem with EVs is the price and growing scarcity of rare metals and elements used in lithium-ion batteries, such as cobalt or manganese, as potential brakes on the widespread introduction of battery-electric cars. Basically, he explains that lithium technology is going to reach a performance barrier around 2025, and after that they will either have to start developing something else or be stuck with a diminishing resource and therefore an elevated cost, as fuel cells become cheaper and cheaper.

c) The materials issue means that we are very unlikely to ever have low cost batteries in volume because even if we do find enough it is so expensive to process, it doesn’t make it worth it. Mining companies know this and don’t even want to operate the processing themselves because there is no money to be made.
“Chief Executive Officer Andrew Mackenzie wants to sell Nickel West because it’ll never be big enough to boost earnings meaningfully, even when it’s producing raw materials for the booming electric vehicle industry.”
bloomberg .com/news/articles/2018-01-10/world-s-no-1-miner-is-building-an-ev-hub-it-doesn-t-want-to-keep

And further than this, countering what Transport & Environment reiterate in various reports:

“Other zero emission technologies, namely hydrogen fuel cells and power to liquid ‘drop-in’ fuels for internal combustion engines, would require 3 to 5 times more electricity than a pure electric drivetrain. In the simplest terms, this would result in an equivalent cost increase factor for the energy/fuel.”

This is simply untrue. We already know its profitable because Nikola are building 700 stations just for the money they will receive in fuel savings on their own trucks. This is a lie, but it goes a bit further; the entire idea of a renewables-based electric grid is that overbuild is unavoidable if we are to move in any way away from massive quantities of fossil fuel backup or transmission which is impractical.

As Eurelectric points out, 15-20% of total EU electricity by 2050 is going to have to come from hydrogen electrolysis, and they represent 3,500 utility companies. Electrolysis is now cheap, but because none of these people can be bothered to find out, we are using information from a decade ago.

And transport is the perfect use of electrolysis. This 3-5 times figure is simply made up. Electrolysis is 80-82% efficient, meaning a loss of 20% on the electricity consumed. And its cheaper at the pump in the US given their figures, using renewable energy. In fact there is no other way to use renewable energy in large amounts – this is the only sane and logical way of storing it and using it as necessary.

This is complicated; but it is worth understanding: electrolyser operators are a valuable addition a renewables-based grid because in times of low demand, they make use of low cost energy and in times of low supply the switch off. This is what is known as ‘Demand Response’ and will become an increasingly vital part of the electricity grid not just in Europe but everywhere. Electrolyser operators can therefore derive an income from this and this hydrogen will also be used for the full range of energy needs within the economy; steel, ammonia, refinery H2, chemicals, transport, trains, methanised gas in the gas grid etc.

Numerous reports now exist regarding power-to-gas generally, and sectoral integration specifically. This is not always obvious and requires some thought.

From Uniper:

“Power grid constraints often lead to curtailment, and there is no way to use this surplus energy or store it for times of higher demand. Even the largest batteries can only help balance demand over the course of a few hours for a limited number of consumers.” – Uniper managing director

euractiv .com/section/energy/opinion/making-the-energy-transition-possible-through-green-hydrogen-and-power-to-gas/

There is no alternative to hydrogen, and various people need to start to develop a better understanding of how a functional energy system is going to work.

]]>
By: reupdate.info https://www.euractiv.com/section/transport/news/truck-makers-push-back-against-eus-first-ever-co2-limits/#comment-335595 Tue, 28 Aug 2018 11:00:22 +0000 https://www.euractiv.com/?post_type=news&p=1265550#comment-335595 We all know that the only option for trucking is hydrogen fuel cells. Now; as I have just explained elsewhere, co-opting batteries is the usual excuse for those who want absolutely no change to the status quo and are confident that decarbonisation is never going to happen – certainly not via battery-powered trucks.

A recent Canadian report outlines the situation well:

“Negatives such as lengthy charging times, the weight of batteries, and an inability to travel long distances, were reasons fully electric trucks were not seen by CESAR as being the best option for Canada as a whole.”

The weight is 2.5 times that of a traditional semi truck, and that is is only for 800km which is half the distance of a diesel or hydrogen version. And the charging time is 5-6 hours using a fast-charger, meaning a lot of space required for multiple vehicles at the same time.

What the Commission and Transport & Environment are doing are trying to avoid hydrogen because much of their funding comes from powerful lobby groups who would prefer if this never happens.

But hydrogen makes perfect sense, and fits perfectly with trucking – highlighting the fact this is a direct affront to accepted wisdom on the subject.

The Commission spends a few billion in direct subsidies to biofuels every year, famously reaching almost €10 billion back in 2011 (euractiv .com/section/energy/opinion/how-eu-subsidies-inflate-biofuel-prices/). Nothing like this amount of money goes to any serious kind of decarbonisation; that being primarily hydrogen.

Fully one-third of Europe’s biofuel is imported palm oil which is 3 times as emissions intensive as traditional fossil fuel, and has now been mandated by the Commission right up to 2030, after an initial review of the situation earlier in the year (when there was actually some talk of limiting use of the ‘fuel’).

Some details: https://gain.fas.usda.gov/Recent%20GAIN%20Publications/Biofuels%20Annual_The%20Hague_EU-28_7-3-2018.pdf

So: any sane person knows burning down rainforests in Indonesia to grow palm oil for EU transport use is plainly a bad idea. The massive subsidies only aggravate matters; *considering there are genuine alternatives*.

And so I will outline briefly what a little under just *one* billion buys when the EU Commission and its many subsidiaries are not corrupt fraudsters, cheating us and ultimately life on Earth now that time has run out. But anyway.

Nikola have signed a deal with Nel Hydrogen ASA for 1 GW of electrolysers and refuelling equipment. This will equate to approximately 700 refuelling stations, and Nel have already started work on the manufacturing facility; which will have an output of 360MW of electrolysis per year. This is similar to Thyssenkrupps 600MW of hydrogen electrolyser manufacturing facility, although certainly the second biggest in the world. The trucks have numerous orders ($8 billion in pre-orders, with all deposits now paid back), will have a range of 1,800km and fuel will officially cost between $5-6 per kg, which is a 20% cost saving. This would be a lot more in the EU.

So that fact that both Transport & Environment and the Commission are simply burning biofuels, right up to 2030 despite the fact we all know its worse that fossil fuels, says a lot. It says to me there are ‘special interests’ at work.

And a further few notes on the subject of hydrogen within transport. Japan, Korea, and China all have extensive plans to decarbonise via hydrogen. They are not using batteries because

a) Teslas has never made any money, in 15 years: “Given that Tesla has never made an annual profit in the almost 15 years since we have existed, profit is obviously not what motivates us” – Elon Musk

b) As the vice president for Hyundai R&D explains, the problem with EVs is the price and growing scarcity of rare metals and elements used in lithium-ion batteries, such as cobalt or manganese, as potential brakes on the widespread introduction of battery-electric cars. Basically, he explains that lithium technology is going to reach a performance barrier around 2025, and after that they will either have to start developing something else or be stuck with a diminishing resource and therefore an elevated cost, as fuel cells become cheaper and cheaper.

c) The materials issue means that we are very unlikely to ever have low cost batteries in volume because even if we do find enough it is so expensive to process, it doesn’t make it worth it. Mining companies know this and don’t even want to operate the processing themselves because there is no money to be made.
“Chief Executive Officer Andrew Mackenzie wants to sell Nickel West because it’ll never be big enough to boost earnings meaningfully, even when it’s producing raw materials for the booming electric vehicle industry.”
bloomberg .com/news/articles/2018-01-10/world-s-no-1-miner-is-building-an-ev-hub-it-doesn-t-want-to-keep

And further than this, countering what Transport & Environment reiterate in various reports:

“Other zero emission technologies, namely hydrogen fuel cells and power to liquid ‘drop-in’ fuels for internal combustion engines, would require 3 to 5 times more electricity than a pure electric drivetrain. In the simplest terms, this would result in an equivalent cost increase factor for the energy/fuel.”

This is simply untrue. We already know its profitable because Nikola are building 700 stations just for the money they will receive in fuel savings on their own trucks. This is a lie, but it goes a bit further; the entire idea of a renewables-based electric grid is that overbuild is unavoidable if we are to move in any way away from massive quantities of fossil fuel backup or transmission which is impractical.

As Eurelectric points out, 15-20% of total EU electricity by 2050 is going to have to come from hydrogen electrolysis, and they represent 3,500 utility companies. Electrolysis is now cheap, but because none of these people can be bothered to find out, we are using information from a decade ago.

And transport is the perfect use of electrolysis. This 3-5 times figure is simply made up. Electrolysis is 80-82% efficient, meaning a loss of 20% on the electricity consumed. And its cheaper at the pump in the US given their figures, using renewable energy. In fact there is no other way to use renewable energy in large amounts – this is the only sane and logical way of storing it and using it as necessary.

This is complicated; but it is worth understanding: electrolyser operators are a valuable addition a renewables-based grid because in times of low demand, they make use of low cost energy and in times of low supply the switch off. This is what is known as ‘Demand Response’ and will become an increasingly vital part of the electricity grid not just in Europe but everywhere. Electrolyser operators can therefore derive an income from this and this hydrogen will also be used for the full range of energy needs within the economy; steel, ammonia, refinery H2, chemicals, transport, trains, methanised gas in the gas grid etc.

Numerous reports now exist regarding power-to-gas generally, and sectoral integration specifically. This is not always obvious and requires some thought.

From Uniper:

“Power grid constraints often lead to curtailment, and there is no way to use this surplus energy or store it for times of higher demand. Even the largest batteries can only help balance demand over the course of a few hours for a limited number of consumers.” – Uniper managing director

euractiv .com/section/energy/opinion/making-the-energy-transition-possible-through-green-hydrogen-and-power-to-gas/

There is no alternative to hydrogen, and various people need to start to develop a better understanding of how a functional energy system is going to work.

]]>
By: Mike Parr https://www.euractiv.com/section/transport/news/truck-makers-push-back-against-eus-first-ever-co2-limits/#comment-335592 Tue, 28 Aug 2018 09:07:43 +0000 https://www.euractiv.com/?post_type=news&p=1265550#comment-335592 The usual speacial pleading – it is a straight re-run of the Cars & Co2 of 2009 – which led to BAU & minimal action by Euro OEMs. The truck fleet could rapidly move to CNG (or LNG). In and of itself this would not reduce CO2 emissions – but would address particulates. Step after that: SNG (synthetic natural gas) which would be carbon neutral. Tech for SNG is there & scalable. Question is: will society pay the cost (which is multiples of CNG). Operators of big truck fleets (40 tonners) renew their trucks every 5 years.

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