Company alliance plans to open Germany’s first large-scale e-fuel factory
An alliance of companies plans to build Germany’s first industrial-scale production facility for synthetic e-fuels which could allow for the climate neutral operation of combustion engine cars. The group aims to produce about 70 million litres of e-fuels per year, enough to cover the average demand of about 100,000 combustion engine vehicles, news magazine Der Spiegel reported. The e-fuel factory will reportedly be built in northern state Lower Saxony and the 16 companies involved aim to commence production by the end of 2026. The site is currently used by chemicals producer Oxxynova.
Disputes about e-fuels as an alternative to electric cars, which could allow the continued use of many combustion engine cars and fossil fuel infrastructure, has been a constant feature in Germany’s transport transition debate for years. Germany’s transport minister Volker Wissing has positioned himself as an avid supporter of the technology and successfully campaigned to grant it a perspective in the EU’s future vehicle emissions rules, to allow the use of climate neutral combustion engines beyond 2035. Researchers have been critical of this position in the past, citing availability as a significant obstacle and saying they expect e-fuels to be scarce and expensive in the foreseeable future.