With the potential to replace more than 25% of the world’s gasoline, bioethanol is currently the only viable alternative to fossil fuels within transportation. Bioethanol reduces CO2 emissions from transport, reduces dependency on oil, and creates a vast number of jobs.
In 2010, Novozymes will be ready for large-scale production of the enzymes necessary to make bioethanol out of agricultural waste material. If China decides to pursue second-generation biofuels, the dream scenario is a 10% reduction in imported gasoline, corresponding to a 90 million tons reduction in annual CO2 emissions, and 6 million direct jobs boosting the Chinese economy.
Beijing should promote flex-fuel vehicles
Those were some of the arguments presented by Michael Fredskov Christiansen, President of Novozymes China, as he and other representatives from a group of selected multinational companies recently met with Beijing’s municipal government.
“The Beijing municipal government should take proactive measures to promote a green transportation system including, among other things, flex-fuel vehicles,” said Michael Fredskov Christiansen. His proposition was echoed by Volkswagen's China President, Zhang Suixin.
With approximately 18 million inhabitants, Beijing is the second largest city in China, and a commitment by the city to biotechnological solutions in transportation would mean significant benefits for both the environment and the Chinese economy.
Great potential for the Chinese waste-to-fuel industry
In April 2009, Novozymes presented a new roadmap for development of second-generation bioethanol in China. Basing its calculations on China-specific costs, including raw material collection and transportation, ethanol production, midstream logistics, and downstream distribution, the report states that second-generation bioethanol is economically favorable compared to other CO2 abatement technologies in the transport sector.
“We believe bioethanol is a significant step towards a world that is not dependent on diminishing fossil oil reserves,” said Michael Fredskov Christiansen. “We call it the biobased society.”