Holden Commodore VE family – Click above for high res image gallery
The wounded man lays with his back against the car. An arrow protrudes from his chest. A stranger approaches clad in scuffed black leather – black boots, black pants, a black leather jacket. The stranger is holding a sawed-off shotgun. He must be here to help. The wounded man begins to speak to the stranger, his voice little more than a whisper. "Thank you, thank you," the wounded man says. The stranger's response is heartbreaking, "I'm just here for the ethanol."
You're right, The Road Warrior probably wouldn't have been as cool if the citizens of a dystopian Australia were defending an ethanol plant instead of a gasoline refinery. But if GM's Aussie division Holden has anything to do with it, Lord Humongous will be ruling the wasteland with an armada of flexfuel-burning green machines instead of smoke-belching 70s muscle cars and motorcycles.
Holden announced today that it has joined a think-tank of sorts that "will investigate the viability of establishing Australia's first ethanol plant capable of turning materials such as household rubbish and building waste into more than 200 million liters of ethanol a year." The other members of the consortium are the Victorian State Government, Caltex (Chevron's Australian division), Veolia (a waste management company) and of obvious importance, Coskata (a waste-into-biofuel company).
Holden Energy and Environment Director Richard Marshall is full of Aussie pride about the measure. "We're committed to having locally built Holden cars capable of running on E85 in the market by 2010," he said. "It's about designing and engineering vehicles for Australians, built by Australians, using Australian fuel alternatives."
Click past the break for the complete press release.
[Source: Holden via MotoBullet]
Victoria could soon be home to a ground-breaking green fuel technology plant, with the announcement of a consortium formed between the Victorian State Government and a group of leading companies.
The consortium - which also includes Holden, Caltex, Veolia, Mitsui and Coskata - will investigate the viability of establishing Australia's first ethanol plant capable of turning materials such as household rubbish and building waste into more than 200 million litres of ethanol a year. This ethanol will be blended into an alternative fuel known overseas as E85; a mixture of up to 85 per cent ethanol and 15 per cent regular petrol.
Holden Energy and Environment Director Richard Marshall said the organisations in the consortium were committed to sustainable motoring through the development of renewable fuels that reduced greenhouse gas emissions and improved energy security.â€¨"Our vision is that this technology will, in time, cut Australia's dependence on petrol by up to 30 per cent and make a major contribution to sustainable motoring and greenhouse gas reduction," Mr Marshall said.
He said Holden would introduce Australia's first locally produced flex-fuel vehicles capable of running on the high-ethanol fuel, later this year.
"We've always said we'd take a leadership position on biofuels, and provide the vehicles to do that. We're committed to having locally built Holden cars capable of running on E85 in the market by 2010," he said. "It's about designing and engineering vehicles for Australians, built by Australians, using Australian fuel alternatives."
Holden's leadership in alternative fuels in Australia is part of GM's global sustainability and energy diversity strategy. In the United States, GM is the leading producer of flex-fuel vehicles with more than 3.5 million E85-capable GM cars on the road today.
To ensure availability of the fuel for Holden's vehicles, Caltex Australia's General Manager Marketing Andy Walz said the company had signed an agreement with Holden which committed to installing pumps in 30 metropolitan and regional service stations later this year, increasing to 100 within 12 months.
"Caltex's expansion into this new fuel and participation in the consortium is part of our ongoing commitment to biofuels and tackling climate change, which fits well with a strategy of providing energy beyond the traditional fuel mix," Mr Walz said.
"Caltex already has about 400 service stations that sell E10 and a growing biodiesel market. We believe the biofuels industry has a vital role in a sustainable transport fuels future and that biofuels are good business opportunity for Caltex."
The plant would produce ethanol using a process developed by leading US biofuel company Coskata Inc, which last year unveiled one of the world's few plants capable of producing ethanol from material such as agricultural waste and household rubbish.
Chief Marketing Officer Wes Bolsen said not all biofuels were created equal. "At Coskata, we don't make fuel from food crops, we use sources like municipal waste that have reached the end of their lifecycle and turn them into renewable energy, which leads to a net positive effect for the environment," Mr Bolsen said.
â€¨â€¨Simon Tori, Victorian Group General Manager for Veolia Environmental Services said the initiative was a quantum leap from the way in which Victoria currently receives, sort and treats its existing waste.
"Deriving energy from municipal, commercial and industrial waste that is otherwise bound for landfill, is an exciting possibility and such a facility will enable Veolia to be at the forefront of the emerging Advanced Resource Recovery Treatment sector."