Many countries are working on alternative fuels, the EU prefers to rely only on electric. Climate protection with e-fuels would also be possible for all combustion engines that are already in use. The basic problem of climate fuel is the high price.

CO2 emissions are to be reduced. That is the credo of German and European climate policy. But while politicians are still banking on electric cars and thus on a system change that would take decades, there is a solution with climate-neutral e-fuels with which at least part of the existing fleet could be operated practically CO2-neutral. Now the introduction is imminent: At a press conference in Berlin, the fuel company P1 announced that it would be opening a filling point before the end of this year.

The exact location is yet to be determined, because the company wants to offer the federal government to find a fuel point that is particularly conveniently located. The heavyweight and high-performance vehicle fleet of the state organs could then be operated with this in a climate-neutral manner instead of being fueled with fossil fuels.

“It’s not about making fossil fuels greener, it’s about eliminating them,” says Benjamin Cuyt, responsible for sales and partnerships at P1. Millions of liters of fuel are already available, and the current cost of 5 to 6 euros per liter should fall very quickly – even a corresponding tax on non-fossil fuels compared to fossil fuels could push them down to around 3.50 euros per liter. The development of the filling station network is carried out with the partner Sprint Tank.

A supply at really marketable prices would of course only be possible if the global oil giants enter the climate fuel business on a large scale and produce the necessary quantities. Germany alone needs 15 million tons of petrol for cars and another 30 million tons of diesel for cars and especially trucks every year.

Engine expert Professor Thomas Koch from KIT Karlsruhe, who has been researching e-fuels for years and calls for their widespread use, sees considerable potential for air-conditioning fuel. By 2035, it would be possible to cover Germany’s fuel needs with e-fuels – provided that politicians would promote the technology in the long term. Now it’s politics’ turn. It remains to be seen whether the traffic light government’s political commitments to climate protection will be followed by action. Attention will focus in particular on the FDP-led ministries, which have found friendly words about openness to technology in recent months, but without preventing the EU’s Basta decision in favor of electric cars.

The experience gained in Berlin could be used at European level in 2026. Because then, as has been stipulated, synthetic fuels should be re-evaluated. This will also be interesting for Germany in particular, because the traffic light energy policy and the nuclear power phase-out in a few months will mean that more coal will have to be converted into electricity again in the coming years – with correspondingly negative effects on the true emissions balance of e-cars.