A report by independent Victorian-based research team ABMARC has revealed the challenges ahead for regulators as Australia continues the transition to more stringent levels of vehicle pollutant emissions and the introduction of a fuel consumption standard over the next decade and beyond.
The report focuses specifically on the operation of petrol engines which power the biggest volume of vehicles on our roads: the light duty models and SUVs.
It provides a comprehensive technical insight into the many facets of modern engine technology and exhaust after treatment systems and the role that many inputs and control mechanisms, such as fuel quality, compression ratio, fuel delivery, valve timing, catalytic converters and particulate filters, have on tailpipe emissions.
The 54-page report was commissioned by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries to better inform policy makers and consumers.
“This report shows how advanced engine technology working with exhaust after treatment systems need high quality fuel to deliver low CO2 and pollutant emissions while maintaining the engine performance demanded by consumers,” the FCAI’s Chief Executive Tony Weber said.
“The FCAI is working closely with the government on developing a framework and schedule which will introduce CO2 or fuel consumption targets that are relevant to Australia.
“What this report also demonstrates is that there is not a ‘one size fits all’ solution to fuel consumption targets. Australian consumers generally prefer larger, heavier vehicles so European targets, which are shaped for small vehicles, would be that much more difficult to achieve.
“Australia needs to set its own objectives and in doing so, offer up incentives for people to switch to low-emission vehicles.
“In any case, to deliver real improvements Australia’s standard grade fuel needs to be 95 RON, and we need to see a huge reduction in sulphur content to 10 parts per million.”
The report can be found on the FCAI website at www.fcai.com.au