While the damage of the pandemic is counted, there are those who look beyond, to the scenarios of the aftermath. It also happens in the automotive world. We return to talk about new models, emissions, sustainable mobility. The horizon of electrification is an obligatory goal: the coronavirus has slowed the transition, it has not stopped it. And if the real zero emissions, those of electricity powered cleanly (ie: from renewable sources), are still far away, the hybrids are one step away, a pity that entry to this territory is blocked by prices, still elitist. This is what the next generation of BEV (Battery electric vehicle) expects, which is said to cost much less, with greater autonomy.

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But while waiting for it to be done? Is it already possible to agree the reasons for conscience with the reasons for the portfolio? The answer is. The accessible alternative to diesel and petrol has existed for a long time, moreover. And it is found in the world of bifuel. Dual feeding. The gas system – LPG and CNG – integrated with the diesel or petrol engine: here is the bridge solution to contain pollution and emissions of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere at a reasonable cost.

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Not everyone is excited about it, it must be said. There are those who say that LPG and methane are not the best. The European NGO Transport & Environment stated in 2018 that CNG cars pollute even more than diesels. According to research by the NOAA in Boulder (Colorado) – the chemical laboratory of the US federal agency that is interested in oceanography, meteorology and climatology -, published a couple of years ago in the authoritative magazine Science, the methane extractive industry (which a super-climate-altering hydrocarbon), with gas leaks from the plants, devastates the environment (the study also calculated the cost of the leaks that occurred between 1995 and 2015: $ 2 billion) .

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But, from Rome, Ispra (the Higher Institute for environmental protection and research, supervised by the Ministry of the Environment) provides an updated study this year in which it is claimed that the mobility of LPG and CNG does not work miracles, but helps, by collaborating with other technologies, to mitigate the environmental impact. And this remains valid even if the data are apparently misleading, because for the emissions of petrol, diesel and LPG cars we refer to vehicles approved Euro 6 in 2018, while for the values ​​of natural gas cars the emission factors use Euro parameters 4, which are the latest available. The fact is that the highest CO2 emissions are those of petrol cars: 195.2 g / km. With LPG it drops to 149.4 (lower than diesel), while it rises to 176 with natural gas. As for polluting emissions, considering the nitrogen oxides (responsible for acid rain) the worst results are those of diesel, while they are excellent for LPG (even better than petrol / electric hybrids). Methane and petrol are equivalent. Finally, fine particulate matter (PM 2.5): the best numbers are, in order, those of LPG and CNG.

The team of bifuel numerous. The newcomer the Dacia (Renault group) Duster on LPG. If in this news someone finds confirmation that the gas has a low profile, you enter an Audi salon. You will find a long line of models – luxury – powered by methane: the g-tron. At the end of the month the new A3 will be added, which since its launch will offer the natural gas version. These are the extremes of an offer that covers all segments, from city cars to wagons, to SUVs.

June 1, 2020 (change June 1, 2020 | 18:15)

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