A study undertaken by Element Energy has said that blending biofuels with conventional fuels will lead to significant emissions reductions for road transport.
The report by the consultancy was commissioned by BP and finds that greater levels of biofuels could cut Britain’s annual vehicle CO2 emissions by 27 per cent or 12 million tonnes per year by 2030.
This 27 per cent reduction could be achieved by blending levels of up to 19 per cent advanced drop-in biofuels into fully compatible modern engines under a high biofuels pathway.
At present, just 5 per cent of biofuels is blended into UK petrol and diesel.
Using a medium biofuels pathway would cut emissions by 9 per cent by introducing 20 per cent biofuel blends from 2020.
Element Energy expects internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles to dominate road transport up to 2030 and sees biofuels working alongside other technologies to reduce emissions.
It also expects that using biofuels won’t necessarily lead to higher fuel prices with an average car owner only seeing their annual bill increasing by £13 per year.
Element Energy associate director Alex Stewart said: “In the long term, electric plug-in and fuel cell vehicles are likely to play a significant role in the transport mix. But we also expect high numbers of ICE-derived vehicles to still be in circulation by 2030, so lower carbon liquid fuels have to play a major part in meeting the UK’s CO2 targets.
“Biofuels also offer a more cost effective way to reduce emissions over the next 17 years, with a fuel premium of £336 million in 2030 against the £1.2 billion it would cost in customer incentives to achieve the same CO2 savings with plug-in vehicles.”