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Efuels it is then, bugger the biofuels

Green fuels have been blamed for almost cutting Salisbury and Exeter off from rail services to London.

South Western Railway has been forced to run a reduced timetable after biofuels used to cut carbon emissions clogged up train engines’ fuel filters.

Many diesel-powered trains have been run on biofuels as part of a push towards net zero in recent years.

Biodiesel is a renewable, biodegradable fuel manufactured domestically from vegetable oils, animal fats, or recycled restaurant grease.

But it is understood that engines were blocked by algae, which forms “organic growths” in train fuel tanks. The algae forms if biofuel sits unused for a period of time and is not treated with chemical additives.

OK, nice idea, doesn’t work then. Next!

9 thoughts on “Efuels it is then, bugger the biofuels”

  1. The algae forms if biofuel sits unused for a period of time and is not treated with chemical additives.

    Don’t let it sit then? Treat it with chemicals? Or use diesel. I rather like the idea of fuel created from waste, as long as it works and is cost effective.

    I suspect ‘efuels’ are going to turn out to be snake oil bollocks, a useful fudge for the car industry. But not as useful as, say, petrol.

  2. I believe that all the efuels needed can be produced with mostly off-the-shelf tech. But to do it would require the UK to already be building nukes at the rate the Frogs were in the 1970’s. Worthless windmills and stupid solar panels should never have been thought of.

    It’s thus impossible to take the present greenification plans seriously. They’re simply something that our woke lords and masters find pretty.

  3. Anyone who can write “the algae forms” should be unemployed. Especially
    as a journalist.

  4. I looked into this last night and it seems to be a known problem. So, why were rail companies doing it? Is it that much cheaper that you’ll risk making your service worse?

  5. Ethanol chews through rubber and resin, explaining why a few years ago, the glue on my bikes fuel pump turned to mush, a wire became detached and I had a near death experience when the engine cut out.

    Helpfully, Esso sell “Synergy Supreme 99”, which although stating on the pump ‘E5’, doesn’t actually contain any ethanol(*). Good for older bikes especially.

    E10 isn’t recommended for lots of older vehicles either…..

    (*) In most areas……You need to check.

  6. You get microbial growth in all diesel system tanks if there is water in the fuel. It grows in the layer between fuel and water. Biofuels make it worse. It’s always fun to have to pump out and filter a 300-gallon truck tank of fuel when it happens – but if you don’t, and run the contaminated fuel through, your engine fuel filter turns into a smelly brick. You can spot someone who really doesn’t know the subject when they call it algae. Truckers use a readily-available biocide to control it, or a chemical designed to keep any water mixed well with the fuel.

    These methods work with biofuels as well as regular fuels. I’m assuming that this train problem stems more from someone neglecting this important step than from any intrinsic biofuel issue. Always better to blame it on the equipment than to say “I messed up.”

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