As us regular folk were getting our heads around the introduction of E10 petrol to our pumps, Prince Charles has told the BBC his Aston Martin DB6 is powered by E85.
The iconic motor, which is also being made into an electric car (more on that here) runs on a blend of 85 percent bioethanol and 15 percent unleaded petrol.
The bioethanol itself is a renewable energy source made by fermenting the sugar and starch components of plant byproducts. This would usually come from sugarcane and crops like grain, using yeast, but in the case of HRH it’s a wine and cheese combination more akin to post Christmas snack that seems to do the job.
The Prince, who has long campaigned for better environmental protection, has made the conversion at a considerable expense and experts have said it wouldn’t be possible for transitions like this to be scaleable.
Greg Archer, UK director of T&E, a European clean transport campaign group, told the Guardian: “Prince Charles’s quaint solution to decarbonise his Aston Martin using a high blend of bioethanol made from cheese and wine wastes should not be mistaken for a serious solution to decarbonise vehicles.
“On a large scale biofuels do more harm than good, driving deforestation and land use change that worsens the climate crisis.”
Although Prince Charles’ own solution may not be fit for the masses, it is likely that the internal combustion engine is not yet dead, as we reported here last week, and we for one predict that synthetic and/or biofuels will play at least a considerable part in how we decarbonise going into the 2030s.