“Synthetic fuel shall save the combustion engine”
Chemist Robert Schlögl, from Germany’s Max-Planck-Research-Institute, wants to save combustion engine technology and its infrastructure from being gradually replaced with electric vehicles by developing synthetic fuel from hydrogen and carbon dioxide (CO2), Andreas Mihm writes in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. “The methodology is well-known, the technology can be bought off the shelf, the patents are registered – we just have to get started,” Schlögl told the newspaper. The professor for chemistry says a decisive emissions reduction in the transport sector cannot be done only by building e-cars – and neglecting one billion existing combustion engines around the world and their infrastructure, Mihm writes. Schlögl adds that using CO2 to produce synthetic fuel gives the greenhouse gas a second lease on life and turns the otherwise unwanted by-product into a usable resource.
For background on German manufacturers' struggle to shift to decarbonised mobility, see the CLEW dossier The Energiewende and German carmakers.