Commercial, Sourcing Renewables - March 30, 2020
Mazda pursues biofuel research projects
Mazda announced March 30 that they are currently involved in joint research projects with Hiroshima University and the Tokyo Institute of Technology to promote the wide-spread development and use of biofuels from microalgae growth.
The automobile manufacturer has previously committed to reducing its average “Well-to-Wheel” CO2 emissions (referring to emissions from across the entire route from fuel extraction at the well to driving a car) 50% by 2030 and 90% by 2050.
Mazda finds the creation of biofuels crucial to that mission due to the fact that internal combustion engines combined with some form of electrification will still account for some 95% of vehicles they produce in 2030. They also expect liquid fuel to remain dominant in the industry until at least 2040.
Mazda is providing technical support to research into genome editing by Hiroshima University and plant physiology by the Tokyo Institute of Technology to accelerate the adoption of microalgae biofuel. When burnt, this type of biofuel only releases CO2 recently removed from the atmosphere via photosynthesis as the algae grew. Algae fuels can also be farmed on land unsuitable for agriculture and are relatively harmless to the environment if spilled.