IIIrd International Seminar on Efficient Ethanol Use
September, 20th and 21st, 2016
Why has research on ethanol engines in Brazil been reduced to almost zero? Can ethanol replace diesel? How and in what uses? What are the consequences of replacing fossil fuels with ethanol in terms of the carbon footprint? Who wins or loses?
These themes will be addressed during the seminar in presentations by specialists and panels with the participation of main stakeholders. Although centered on Brazilian issues, the seminar will also discuss the possible diffusion to other countries, after COP21 and the diesel emission problems.
Modern automotive use of ethanol started in Brazil after the first oil crisis, to reduce gasoline imports. Initially, pure ethanol was blended with gasoline and, after 1979, hydrated ethanol (5% water content) was also used as a gasoline substitute in specially designed cars.
The success of these initiatives led other countries to use ethanol as an automotive fuel beginning in the ‘90s, due to environmental concerns. Increased and diversified worldwide ethanol production from several feedstock and technologies is turning it into a new commodity.
Ethanol is presently used as a gasoline octane enhancer in more than 20 countries. Today, 45 million Flex Fuel Vehicles (FFV) circulate worldwide. Two thirds are in Brazil, where ethanol is widely available and five million use it regularly. The USA has the second largest fleet but the use is low because of the small number of E85 stations. About 1 million FFV circulate in Europe, led by Sweden, France and Germany.
Instituto Nacional de Eficiência Energética (National Institute of Energy Efficiency) created in 1994, is a private non-profit organization which brings together people and institutions interested in promoting the efficient use of all forms of energy in Brazil. It seeks to reduce market imperfections by improving the level of available information and supporting the creation of norms and legislation. (www.inee.org.br).
Programa Etanol Eficiente (Ethanol Efficient Program), started in 2014, as an INEE program to enhance the competitiveness of hydrated ethanol (HE) as an automotive fuel, by the increase of its utilization efficiency.