Stork’s Special Brief: E-fuel? seriously? The spectrum of knowledge

The world is about to change – whether humanity wants it or not: agriculture, transportation and power generation must become sustainable and climate-resilient, while at the same time providing for a growing world population with growing demand. What does this mean for us and our community? What about the environment and the creatures in it?
In Storks Spezialfutter, environmental journalist Ralph Stork gets to the heart of these questions once a month.

For a transitional period, synthetic fuels will still be important to vehicular traffic anyway. According to EU plans, which the Ministry of Transport is trying to torpedo, no new cars with internal combustion engines should be registered from 2035. However, the combustion engine crowd that was allowed on the road in previous years can continue to drive if it is started Climate neutral e-fuel. Electronic fuels for shipping and air traffic, and electronic fuels for the current automotive fleet – the demand for the hard-to-produce substance is growing. According to the wishes of the FDP, it will be larger.

There are no reasonable reasons why the combustion engine should not be retired after about 150 years. On its homepage, the FDP argues with “technological openness” for “climate-neutral mobility.” However, the fact that they could be used in a climate-neutral way at some point in the future — with a great deal of effort — won’t greatly help us overcome the climate crisis.

I want to have fun, err on the gas

If future generations want to understand why politicians and society did not act in a timely or decisive manner in the face of climate change, they can take as a lesson the impending end of the combustion engine. It shows how tightly we cling to old habits. How unwilling we are to accept that combating climate change will come with limitations. We kind of want that rapid rise in temperature to be captured. We also see with dread how forests perish under drought stress and how it sometimes becomes unbearably hot in the cities in summer. But we also want to continue living as opulently as we have so far, flying down the highway with our petrol engines, if possible without looking at the unsightly wind turbines that make our climate-friendly commute possible. But both at the same time will not work. Or, to use the slogan of Brexiteers: You can’t have your cake and eat it.

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