Engine Manufacturers Release Specs for Biofuel

The Engine Manufacturers Association (EMA) released a test specification for biodiesel fuel to facilitate testing and evaluation of how blended biodiesel fuels perform in today’s clean-burning diesel engines. The EMA specifications establish technical requirements for blends of petroleum fuel and biodiesel fuel that can be used to assess the effects of such biodiesel fuels on engine performance, durability and emissions.

“Engine manufacturers recognize that federal and state policy makers are evaluating the potential energy and air quality benefits that may be associated with the expanded use of high quality biodiesel fuel blends,” said Jed Mandel, EMA President. The Test Specifications for Biodiesel Fuel define a biodiesel blend fuel with the properties and characteristics that engine manufacturers believe are needed to ensure good performance in today’s engines. Engine manufacturers consider the specifications a critical and necessary first step in further testing and evaluating fuel blends with biodiesel content greater than 5%. “However, before the nation moves to increase the biodiesel content of the diesel fuel supply,” Mandel added, “engine manufacturers and biodiesel producers must fully evaluate biodiesel fuels. The development of a test specification for a blended fuel with 20% biodiesel content is intended to jump-start the testing and evaluation process.” “Today’s diesel engines are 90% cleaner and also are more fuel efficient than those used just a decade ago, and on-highway engines slated for introduction in 2007 will reduce particulate and hydrocarbon emissions by another 90%”, continued Mandel. “These high-performance, low-emitting diesels require high-performance fuels that meet exacting specifications and are of consistently high quality. Engine manufacturers need assurance that biodiesel blends are an acceptable fuel, and that their use in state-of-the-art engines does not have a negative impact on performance, durability, or the ability to meet near-zero emissions limit set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board.” The EMA Test Specifications for Biodiesel Fuel establish a baseline B20 biodiesel blend that can be used for further testing and evaluation. EMA encourages vehicle owners interested in using biodiesel blends to request that the fuel meet the EMA specifications and that biodiesel fuel providers also produce blends meeting the EMA requirements and BQ 9000 production standards. Importantly, the EMA specifications are not an approved national fuel standard, and should not be used as such.

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