DaimlerChrysler was the sponsor of a recent summit that looked to gain widespread acceptance of 20% biodiesel by the makers of engines and vehicles. The auto giant also asked the group to come up with a viable fuel standard for the B20 finished blend.
In a press release from the National Biodiesel Board, the summit looked for a defined standard for B20. An American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) specification already exists for 100% biodiesel. The B20 standard would give engine makers something for which they can design:
“Biodiesel represents a huge opportunity to address some of our nation’s toughest energy, environmental and economic challenges,” said Deborah Morrissett, DaimlerChrysler’s VP of Regulatory Affairs. “We know this is the right thing to do – so the goal now is to develop a national B20 standard that can be universally applied to all diesel vehicles, both on road and in production, to confidently support higher blends of biodiesel such as B20.”
“The B100 standard has been designed so that it is protective of B20 and lower blends,” said Steve Howell, NBB Technical Director and Chairman of the ASTM Task Force on biodiesel standards, “but regulators need us to approve a finished blend standard to hold people to, and engine makers need something they can design to.”
The manufacturers, policy makers, regulators and biodiesel industry representatives who met for this summit also identified several other areas to bolster B20 including long-term effects of emissions control and after-treatment devices, long-term engine durability testing, and greater fuel quality monitoring.