The world now has its first ecolabelled fuel. Great... what's it mean? First of all, the certification itself comes from the Nordic Ecolabel, "the official Nordic environmental award [that] is given to products and services that fulfill stringent environmental criteria." All right. What's the award signify? "Reduction of emissions that negatively affect global warming and climate change, an absolute threshold value to the amount of CO2 that may be released to the atmosphere during the entire lifecycle of the fuel, restrictions on the total energy used at the production stage, traceability of crops and certified sustainable farming and defined limitations on health effects of these fuels."

So, this means that an independent organization has looked at methane fuel from the Swedish company FordonsGas Sverige AB (aren't Nordic languages fun?) and has decided that it's relatively green. That's a good thing. The gas itself is half biogas and half from fossils and will be available in Swedish pumping stations in no time flat. Not sure what the swan is all about.

[Source: FordonsGas Sverige AB]

PRESS RELEASE:

Svanen: Methane - the World's First Ecolabelled Fuel

STOCKHOLM, Sweden--As the search for alternative fuels continues, the Nordic Ecolabel today announced the first ecolabelled fuel. Methane from the Swedish company FordonsGas Sverige AB is the world's first ecolabelled fuel, having fulfilled the rigorous criteria of the Nordic Ecolabel.

"We believe that our receipt of this ecolabel will increase interest within the automotive industry for alternative fuels, which is of critical importance both for our company and for the environment", says Bo Ramberg, CEO FordonsGas Sverige AB.

The interest in methane-powered cars has risen exponentially in Sweden. 15,000 cars and buses in Sweden use methane, an increase of 60% over the past few years. In Sweden, methane for fuel is a 50/50 mixture of fossil natural gas and biogas from digestion plants. "Our goal is to help guide the way for future alternative fuels. Nordic Ecolabelled fuels are a much better alternative to petrol than fossil fuels, with proven reduced impact on the climate. We also hope to contribute to the development of more sustainable farming and increase the possibilities for better social and work conditions", says Ragnar Unge, CEO at the Swedish Nordic Ecolabel company.

The Nordic Ecolabel has requirements for the entire product lifecycle from the raw materials to the finished product, in this case the fuel that is available to consumers at petrol stations. The most essential requirements for Nordic Ecolabelled fuels are:

• Reduction of emissions that negatively affect global warming and climate change

• An absolute threshold value to the amount of CO2 that may be released to the atmosphere during the entire lifecycle of the fuel

• Restrictions on the total energy used at the production stage

• Traceability of crops and certified sustainable farming

• Defined limitations on health effects of these fuels.

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