web analytics

Biofuel stars at Taupo (and we win)

Written By: - Date published: 1:43 pm, January 22nd, 2008 - 10 comments
Categories: news - Tags: ,

696367.jpgCongratultions to Jonny Reid for his win in the Taupo A1GP sprint race on Sunday.

He also managed to finish fourth in the feature race which gives the NZ team the series lead.

What was also a world first is that all of the teams competing took to the track with 30% biofuel in their tanks.

As reported by The Herald:

A1GP’s new fuel, an ethanol-based product called Hiperflo E30, is sourced from sugar beet in Europe and produced specifically for A1GP.

Developed in partnership with Zytek, the engine maker for the series, the fuel will reduce CO2 emissions by 21 per cent per car based on a wheel-to-wheel calculation. The introduction of E30 was delayed from the start of the season, making Taupo the first A1GP event powered by biofuel.

10 comments on “Biofuel stars at Taupo (and we win) ”

  1. Phil 1

    It’s great to see Kiwi’s punching above their weight!

    Colin Giltrap has put together a fantastic team, and they deserve a lot bigger profile than they get. I’ve always thought that NZ’s support of motorsport (especially McLarenF1) should be up there with the level of mania exhibited by Italians toward Ferrari.

    Speaking of Ferrari, A1 are switching from Zytek to Ferrari V8’s at the end of this season, so I suspect that biofuel will be short-lived in the series. Good on them for giving it a crack though.

  2. insider 2

    yeah great.

    It costs more, gets lower fuel efficiency, and may actually increase emissions if gained from farmed crops. But hey it makes a great photo op for the so called sustainability crowd.

  3. Mason Clinic 3

    I am not well

    [Tane: I know you’re not Dad, so stop posting as other people]

  4. Matthew Pilott 4

    insider, I understand the efficiency loss due to bio-enthanol (but I don’t think that’s likely in a racing situation) but it is unlikely to increase emmissions that count.

    Fossil fuels are what I call deep-cycle (I think it may be the common term) – they’re in the ground for millions of years and sequester billions of tonnes of carbon in that way. Once released, well, it’s in the atmosphere for good (in our timescale, perhaps not in a geological sense of time but that’s not relevant to an approx. 6,000 year old civilisation).

    Bio-fuels are from shallow-cycle carbon – it was in the air, it goes back into the plant as the crop grows, and is then released back into the air during combustion. Not it’s far from perfect – the carbon used to grow the damn crops, not to mention the deforestation that is occuring world-wide make for some posers that I wouldn’t expect the A1GP to face. However the carbon cost of oil production isn’t small either.

    The upshot is, they’re supporting an initiative that is of a sum benefit. Think of it this way – with fossil fuels, 100% of the carbon is ‘new’ to the atmosphere. With bio-fuels, all of the carbon has been taken out of the atmosphere and is being returned.

    Sustainable – not quite, but better than the alternative!

  5. insider 5


    The answer is yes and no and it depends. There has been a lot of debate over bioethanol particularly. No problem with ‘waste’ products that are converted. I think the well to wheels savings are pretty clear.

    A lot of the issue comes down to the farmed fuels and the inputs used or assumptions. You can get very different numbers for corn ethanol from the states/europe than from NZ because of the relative intensity of farming practices. In NZ we use much less energy and much of our electricity is renewable. That isn;t the norm for the big biofuel countries (except Brazil) so you still ahve the deep carbon of coal, oil or gas being asignificant factor. I’ve seen some analyses where the balance moves from negative to positive based on whether you use the leftover bagasse or straw as heat inputs to the fuel making process. That is a pretty fine balance.

    I think the answer is it is not quite as simple as some local politicians would make out.

    It is going to be interesting this year to see how the oil industry copes with biofuel targets. The problem we are going to have in NZ is if the govt tries to restrict imports on sustainability grounds. It will just cut our noses off to spite our faces because it will restrict options which will further increase the cost of an expensive fuel.

  6. Askewed 6

    What was even more impressive was that our local Toyota Racing Series (which also featured at the taupo event) is now using fuel that is 85 per cent biofuel – which apparently comes from Fonterra’s wey.

  7. oldsalt 7

    And without motor racing the world would be a better place.
    No glorification of speed.
    No driving without conveyance.
    One less bastion of “winning”

  8. Outofbed 8

    Just can’t get excited by Motor racing ( watching)

  9. Phil 9

    Ah, yes, no talk of motoring can ever be complete without someone getting in a dig at the wastefulness and glorification of speed…

    Well, it may come as a surprise, but I actually agree. Motorsport, as an industry, needs to take responsibility for the impact it has on the world. It needs to stand up and say;

    “We are to blame for the exponential increase in safety standards on modern road cars, that save thousands of lives each year. We are at fault for the technological improvements that make the engine in your four door-sedan more fuel efficient, the improvement in aerodynamic efficiency of the vehicle body, and the advancement of tyre technology, that saves the world millions of gallons of petroleum.”

    Gosh, if only they would take responsibility for all that wastefullness. Yes, without that competitive instinct to ‘win’ we would all be so much better off.

  10. PM 10

    To the hollow men and women behind the standard:

    Can I ask, do you think it would be inappropriate or unethical if people employed by a union were to run an anonymous blog and on that blog make a post about how someone high up in that union (eg the union’s president) was standing for a political nomination, together with a glowing recommendation (eg “.I’ve got to say I was taken by his level-headedness and the way he’d think before passing comment on anything – definitely a safe pair of hands”) while passing themselves off as independent commentators – all the while refusing to disclose that they worked for that union and hence had a vested interest?

    Not saying that that’s what you’ve done, of course. Just asking whether you believe that would be inappropriate or unethical? Simple question, really. A “yes” or “no” answer would suffice.

    Having asked the question, however, your refusal to deny that staff of EPMU are behind this blog really make these sorts of posts a bit suspicious:

    Pryde of the South

    Of course you could remove all suspicion by simply denying that anyone who posts on this blog is employed by said union.

    Simply, really. Yet no denial. Why wouldn’t you deny it if it wasn’t true?

    Hopefully you’re starting to see why disclosure statements are so important.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • NZ announces a third P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    The Government has deployed a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea, announced Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark. “New Zealand has long supported ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Pacific trade and development agreement a reality
    Pacific regional trade and development agreement PACER Plus will enter into force in 60 days now that the required eight countries have ratified it. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the announcement that the Cook Islands is the eighth nation to ratify this landmark agreement. “The agreement represents ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Securing a pipeline of teachers
    The Government is changing its approach to teacher recruitment as COVID-19 travel restrictions continue, by boosting a range of initiatives to get more Kiwis into teaching. “When we came into Government, we were faced with a teacher supply crisis,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “Over the past three years, we ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Border exceptions for a small number of international students with visas
    The Government has established a new category that will allow 250 international PhD and postgraduate students to enter New Zealand and continue their studies, in the latest set of border exceptions. “The health, safety and wellbeing of people in New Zealand remains the Government’s top priority. Tight border restrictions remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • First COVID-19 vaccine purchase agreement signed
    The Government has signed an agreement to purchase 1.5 million COVID-19 vaccines – enough for 750,000 people – from Pfizer and BioNTech, subject to the vaccine successfully completing all clinical trials and passing regulatory approvals in New Zealand, say Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods and Health Minister Chris Hipkins. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • International statement – End-to-end encryption and public safety
    We, the undersigned, support strong encryption, which plays a crucial role in protecting personal data, privacy, intellectual property, trade secrets and cyber security.  It also serves a vital purpose in repressive states to protect journalists, human rights defenders and other vulnerable people, as stated in the 2017 resolution of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ministry of Defence Biodefence Assessment released
    The Ministry of Defence has today released a Defence Assessment examining Defence’s role across the spectrum of biological hazards and threats facing New Zealand. Biodefence: Preparing for a New Era of Biological Hazards and Threats looks at how the NZDF supports other agencies’ biodefence activities, and considers the context of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020
    New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020 Hon David Parker’s response following Thomas Piketty and Esther Duflo. Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening, wherever in the world you might be. I first acknowledge the excellent thought provoking speeches of Thomas Piketty and Esther ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Kaipara Moana restoration takes next step
    A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed today at Waihāua Marae between the Crown, local iwi and councils to protect, restore and enhance the mauri of Kaipara Moana in Northland. Environment Minister David Parker signed the document on behalf of the Crown along with representatives from Ngā Maunga Whakahī, Ngāti ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand and Uruguay unite on reducing livestock production emissions
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Uruguayan Minister of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries Carlos María Uriarte have welcomed the launch of a three-year project that will underpin sustainable livestock production in Uruguay, Argentina, and Costa Rica.  The project called ‘Innovation for pasture management’ is led by Uruguay’s National Institute of Agricultural ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 3100 jobs created through marae upgrades
    Hundreds of marae throughout the country will be upgraded through investments from the Provincial Growth Fund’s refocused post COVID-19 funding to create jobs and put money into the pockets of local tradespeople and businesses, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta have announced. “A total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Health volunteers recognised in annual awards
    Health Minister Chris Hipkins has announced 9 teams and 14 individuals are the recipients of this year’s Minister of Health Volunteer Awards.  “The health volunteer awards celebrate and recognise the thousands of dedicated health sector volunteers who give many hours of their time to help other New Zealanders,” Mr Hipkins ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community COVID-19 Fund supports Pacific recovery
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio says a total of 264 groups and individuals have successfully applied for the Pacific Aotearoa Community COVID-19 Recovery Fund, that will support Pacific communities drive their own COVID-19 recovery strategies, initiatives, and actions. “I am keen to see this Fund support Pacific ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community benefits from Māori apprenticeships
    Up to 50 Māori apprentices in Wellington will receive paid training to build houses for their local communities, thanks to a $2.75 million investment from the Māori Trades and Training Fund, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Ngāti Toa Rangatira Incorporated to provide its Ngā Kaimahi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Training fund supports Māori jobseekers
    Rapidly growing sectors will benefit from a $990,000 Māori Trades and Training Fund investment which will see Wellington jobseekers supported into work, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Sapphire Consultants Ltd. to help up to 45 Māori jobseekers into paid training initiatives over two years through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ruakura Inland Port development vital infrastructure for Waikato
    The Government is investing $40 million to develop an inland port at Ruakura which will become a freight super-hub and a future business, research and residential development for the Waikato, Urban Development and Transport Minister Phil Twyford, and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today. The funding has been has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Appointments made to Defence Expert Review Group
    Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today the establishment of an Expert Review Group to review a number of aspects of the New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) structure, information management and record-keeping processes.  The Expert Review Group’s work arises out of the first recommendation from the Report of the Government’s Inquiry ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • No active community cases of COVID-19
    There are no active community cases of COVID-19 remaining in the country after the last people from the recent outbreak have recovered from the virus, Health Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “This is a big milestone. New Zealanders have once again through their collective actions squashed the virus. The systems ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clean energy upgrade for more public buildings
    More public buildings will be supported by the Government to upgrade to run on clean energy, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. Minister Shaw announced that Lincoln and Auckland universities will receive support through the Clean-Powered Public Service Fund to replace fossil fuel boilers. Southern, Taranaki, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Schools back donations scheme for the second year
    More schools have opted in to the donations scheme for 2021, compared to 2020 when the scheme was introduced. “The families of more than 447,000 students will be better off next year, with 94% of eligible schools and kura opting into the scheme,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Ruapehu cycle trails gets PGF boost
    The spectacular Mountains to Sea cycle trail in Ruapehu District will receive $4.6 million in funding from the Provincial Growth Fund for two additional trails, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This is an exciting development for the local community, and one that will provide significant economic opportunities ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago