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Porsche to invest $110 million in Tasmanian sustainable e-fuels production facility


Carbon-neutral e-fuel producer HIF Global says it will make more than 100 million litres per year at the Tasmanian site

Tasmania has been confirmed to be the home of a new HIF Global renewable fuel plant and will be the first of its kind in Australia. 

HIF Global and its HIF Asia Pacific arm will create a site to produce carbon-neutral fuels approximately 30km south of the town of Burnie on the northern coast of Tasmania. 

The corporation aims to produce over 8 billion litres a year of carbon fuels, and Tasmania will play a big part in this project. 

Not just Porsche but all cars could run off this new e-fuel

HIF expects the Tasmanian site to produce up to 100 million litres per year of e-fuels which will aim to reduce global carbon emissions by approximately 260,000 tonnes per year. 

HIF says that is the equivalent of decarbonising 52,000 vehicles that are on the road today. 

But don’t expect the plant to open right away. HIF Asia Pacific has locked in 2024 as the start date for construction but the company says it will prioritise using the local workforce to add jobs to the area. 

Efuels work like fossil fuels but without the nasty bits

The Tasmanian facility will be similar to the facilities already built in Chile and the United States, and will run in an emissions-free way, with water sourced for electrolysis extracted from bio-waste. 

How does Porsche come into all of this?

Three months ago, Porsche announced it would invest a large amount of money (USD$75 million) into e-fuels, and more specifically, the HIF Global corporation that specialises in emissions-free fuel production.

Porsche has been a strong supporter of the science and technology of e-fuels for quite some time, and actually ran their new Porsche Cayman GT4 RS purely off e-fuels for its launch this year. 

The German sports car company has also committed to using e-fuels in motorsport and will follow a similar trajectory to Formula One. Organisers from the popular open-wheeled motorsport have announced all Formula One cars will use emissions-friendly fuel by 2026 when the next line of efficient racing engines are manufactured. 

The Cayman GT4 RS launched with synthetic fuel capability

What is an e-fuel and how is it produced?

HIF Global aims to be the world’s largest e-fuel provider by combining green hydrogen with carbon dioxide through a process called synthesis. The firm is then able to gain a gasoline-like substitute that can work in existing engines. 

It’s a pretty fascinating technology and could be a real way to keep the combustion engine alive. When electric cars become a mainstay and combustion engines are pushed to the side, and when fossil fuels run out, we will be left with billions of cars that can no longer run. They will take up space, clog our streets and lay dormant unless we do something about it.

E-fuels could be a way for us to continue to drive and love combustion performance cars

Will we be able to recycle the world’s engines, melt them down and build electric motors? Or will we be able to use the engine resources we have and use e-fuels to run them with very little, if any emissions from the tailpipe?

These are the questions already being answered by HIF Global and Porsche, but for now, it is a waiting game to see what technologies come to the forefront of society.

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