From the country to the car

Volkswagen and Illinois-based Archer Daniels Midland Company have signed a joint research agreement aimed at further developing and utilising biodiesel fuels for the automotive industry.

The agreement is said to mark the first time that one of the world’s leading automakers has joined forces with a major global agricultural company to co-operate on the development of next-generation clean renewable fuels.

Biodiesel is a fuel mixture made by combining diesel petroleum with natural or renewable resources such as rapeseed oil (commonly known as canola) or soybean oil.

The use of such cleaner burning biodiesel, which can power conventional diesel engines, is said to be environmentally friendly and reduces emissions of carbon monoxide and particulate matter. As an alternative and renewable fuel, biodiesel of a special quality level can also reduce overall global dependence on fossil fuels.

‘Given the tremendous environmental, economic and quality-related benefits of increased biodiesel usage, we believe this Joint Research Agreement will go a long way toward advancing and furthering the development of this vital renewable fuel choice,’ said Dr Bernd Pischetsrieder, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG.

He added: ‘Volkswagen has been a leader in the development of advanced clean diesel engines and this agreement represents Volkswagen’s commitment to introducing clean burning and renewable fuels into the automotive industry.’