Ruth Mitchell

Member Article

North East could become green fuel capital

North East transport operators are invited to test vehicles powered on ‘green fuel’ on November 1.

Northeast Biofuels, the not-for-profit company which aims to promote the awareness and use of biofuels, is hosting a workshop to explain the potential of ‘E85’ - a fuel blend made of 85% bioethanol and 15% petrol. E85 can be produced from materials such as wheat and straw, and it reduces carbon emissions by at least 50%.

John Reynolds, Chairman of Northeast Biofuels said: “Our region is already established as a major centre for the biofuels industry - for example the largest biodiesel plant in Europe is now operating at Seal Sands - and there are several companies actively developing plans for bioethanol production in the Tees Valley. The North East has a number of key advantages, including the availability of wheat supplies.

“The interest in bioethanol is growing rapidly-major manufacturers such as Ford and Saab are now selling ‘flexi fuel’ vehicles able to run on either E85 or straight petrol, and several supermarkets have expressed an interest in providing the fuel on their forecourts if there is sufficient demand.

“That is why it is important to raise the awareness of both fleet operators and general motorists about the benefits of bioethanol. Already its use is growing rapidly in other parts of world - in Brazil for example 85% of new vehicles are now equipped to use it - and it does provide another opportunity for the North East to strengthen its position as the UK’s leading centre for green energy developments.”

The E85 workshop will take place at Durham Country Cricket Ground at Chester-le-Street on Wednesday, November 1st. Delegates will have the opportunity to drive vehicles operated on E85, as well as hearing about the possibility of developing a network of outlets able to supply the new fuel.

More details about workshop can be found at or by contacting Dawn Topping. Call 0870 0130629 or email

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ruth Mitchell .

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