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2015 Ford Mustang <b>Fuel Economy</b> Takes a Hit in Trade-off for Some New Upgrades

Pipe: Passenger vehicles - Sun, 2014-09-14 10:48
The EPA numbers are in, and it looks like the 2015 Ford Mustang lineup will not boast the same fuel economy as the 2014 models. The new pony car ...

GM Reveal Official <b>Fuel Economy</b> Figures of the 2015 Chevrolet Colorado, Price Announced

Pipe: Passenger vehicles - Sun, 2014-09-14 10:26
The 2015 Chevrolet Colorado is often referred to as the best pickup truck in the American market. It outclassed most of its competitors to achieve ...

NBK Capital and KNPC sign financial advisory contract for <b>Clean Fuels</b> Project

Pipe: Passenger vehicles - Sun, 2014-09-14 09:18
“NBK Capital was selected as exclusive financial advisor to KNPC with regards to the financing of the Clean Fuels Project based on the firm's track ...

Neues Gesetz: Dobrindt will Elektroautos auf der Busspur fahren lassen

Pipe: Europe - Sun, 2014-09-14 08:51
Fahren auf der Busspur oder verbilligte Parkgebühren - mit solchen Anreizen will Verkehrsminister Dobrindt nach SPIEGEL-Informationen künftig Elektroautos fördern. Profitieren würden davon auch Luxuskarossen von Porsche und Mercedes. Umweltschützer sind empört.

Xi pledges close co-op with Maldives on climate change

Pipe: Homepage Latest Headlines - Sun, 2014-09-14 06:12
Chinese President Xi Jinping vows to pursue close cooperation with the Maldives on climate change ahead of his state visit to the island country.

Der neue Fünftürer: Mini bleibt Mini, auch als Maxi

Pipe: Europe - Sun, 2014-09-14 01:02
Nach mehr als sechzig Jahren ist es jetzt soweit: Den Mini gibt es erstmals als Fünftürer. Hat sich das Warten gelohnt?

Lawton's "Clean Air Campaign" ends with hot-air balloon ride

Pipe: Passenger vehicles - Sun, 2014-09-14 00:52
"The biggest thing is trying to get people involved in taking care of our air and doing things that will actually keep our air quality in mind," said Richard ...

Shift away from manual transmissions due to automatics' efficiency

Pipe: Passenger vehicles - Sun, 2014-09-14 00:30
Improvements in the function and fuel economy of automatic transmissions have essentially killed the manual in the U.S., said Jack Nerad, the senior ...

How automakers, suppliers are preparing for tougher emissions rules

Pipe: Passenger vehicles - Sat, 2014-09-13 23:56
To help meet upcoming Tier 3 emissions standards, automakers and suppliers are devising ways to heat the catalytic converter faster. The sooner the ...

Big Fix: Sun and Wind Alter German Landscape, Leaving Utilities Behind

Pipe: Homepage Latest Headlines - Sat, 2014-09-13 20:55
Germany’s renewable-energy push has had an impact far beyond its shores, driving down costs faster than almost anyone thought possible just a few years ago.

Germany’s Grass-Roots Energy Revolution

Pipe: Homepage Latest Headlines - Sat, 2014-09-13 20:14
A visit to the Aller-Leine-Tal, one of many energy cooperatives that have contributed to the success so far of Germany’s Energiewende, or energy transition.

Creating climate change awareness through films

Pipe: India - Sat, 2014-09-13 15:37
To broaden awareness on climate change issues across India, Ennovate Global, a specialist in climate change research and communication, and Good Relations India, a strategic communications consultancy, in partnership with the United Nations Foundation, hosted the two-day Clima Film Fest 2014 that concluded at MOP Vaishnav College for Women on Saturday.

East Chicago R&amp;D center helps develop new steels

Pipe: Passenger vehicles - Sat, 2014-09-13 12:07
Fortiform steel is stronger, meaning less of it can be used in cars, which helps automakers meet stringent new EU emissions standards. The EU aims ...

Could Electric Cars Spell Trouble for America's Roads?

Pipe: Passenger vehicles - Sat, 2014-09-13 09:30
In fact, critics of America's historically low fuel economy have cause to celebrate as well, with America's average fuel economy reaching a record high ...

Toyota and partners launching Cité lib by Ha:mo EV car sharing in Grenoble; ultracompact EVs complementing public transport

Pipe: Advanced tech - Sat, 2014-09-13 08:05

Toyota i-ROAD and COMS for use in "Cité lib by Ha:mo" EV sharing trial in Grenoble, France. Click to enlarge.

The City of Grenoble, France, its metropolitan area Grenoble-Alpes Metropole, EDF and its affiliate Sodetrel, Toyota Motor Corporation and Cité lib officially launched the new “Cité lib by Ha:mo” electric vehicle car-sharing service. (Earlier post.)

Offering a new type of mobility based on ultra-compact electric vehicles, the service aims to complement Grenoble’s public transport network with a solution for short-trips—including one-way trips—that can be planned as part of overall city journeys. The vehicles and the charging stations are seamlessly connected to the IT infrastructure of Grenoble’s transport network, offering both route planning and online/mobile app reservations.

Toyota is providing 35 Toyota i-ROAD EVs, the largest number in service in the world. (Earlier post.) The Toyota i-ROAD is an innovative, fun-to-drive three-wheel personal mobility vehicle equipped with Active Lean technology that emulates the movements of a skier. The i-ROAD is as agile as a scooter with the enclosed-canopy comfort of a car. Toyota is also providing 35 four-wheel COMS vehicles. (Earlier post.)

Toyota i-ROAD for use in “Cité lib by Ha:mo” EV sharing trial in Grenoble, France. Click to enlarge.

The 70 Toyota vehicles will be available for short city trips in 27 charging stations installed and operated by Sodetrel—including for one-way trips from one station to another. A total of 120 charging points for the project and 41 for other plug-in vehicles will be added to the city’s transport infrastructure.

Toyota i-ROAD and COMS at a charging station for “Cité lib by Ha:mo” EV sharing trial. Click to enlarge.

Each station—which is located close to tram, bus or train stops—is equipped with at least four spots for i-ROADs and COMS. Some stations also feature one or two spaces for other EVs and PHEVs.

Users can pick-up one of the 70 vehicles and drop it off at any station near their destination without having to return it to the original pickup point. They will only be charged for the ride.

The service eliminates the need to look for a parking place. In addition, the compactness of the vehicles makes it easier to plan and build parking and charging infrastructure.

Toyota is not only contributing the 70 electric vehicles to the project, but is also responsible for the car-sharing management system—called Ha:mo (for Harmonious Mobility)—which it has been piloting in its home town of Toyota City in Japan. Toyota considers that electric vehicles are part of the overall solution for low-carbon transport and are especially suited to short-distance, urban journeys, while hybrids, plug-in hybrids and fuel cell vehicles will prove more practical for longer trips.

Having operated a car sharing service in Grenoble for nearly 10 years with 80 vehicles (gasoline, hybrids, CNG and electric), Cité lib will manage the day-to-day operation of the new service. The additional EVs will double its fleet and offer a different type of service to its subscribers.

A simple pricing plan dubbed “3, 2, 1 euros” for respectively the first, second and third 15-minute increments will be proposed to Grenoble citizens. For annual local transport card subscribers, the price will be reduced, at 2+ 1 euro for respectively the first and subsequent 15-minute increments.

Cité lib by Ha:mo will open to the public on 1 October 2014 for a three-year period. The project partners will use this trial to collect valuable data on technical aspects and user behaviors.

Petrobras’ total production tops 2.7 million barrels of oil equivalent per day in August

Pipe: Advanced tech - Sat, 2014-09-13 07:50

Petrobras’ consolidated oil and natural gas production in Brazil and abroad reached 2,759 thousand barrels of oil equivalent per day (boed), rising 2.2% from a reported production of 2,699 thousand boed in July.

Petrobras’s domestic oil production increased by 2.7% from 2,049 thousand barrels per day (bpd) in July to 2,105 thousand bpd in August. Regarding the total oil production operated by Petrobras domestically, which includes the share operated by the company for its partners, a production of 2,232 thousand bpd was reported in August. This represents a 3.7% rise from July’s production of 2,152 thousand bpd.

Petrobras’s total domestic oil and natural gas production rose by 2.9% from a production of 2,479 thousand boed in July to 2,551 thousand boed in August. Total domestic oil and natural gas production operated by Petrobras, in turn, rose by 3.9% from a production of 2,634 thousand boed in July to 2,736 thousand boed in August.

The rise in production was driven primarily by the ramp up of platforms P-55 at Roncador field (Campos Basin), P-58, which started-up in March at Parque das Baleias (northern section of Campos Basin), and FPSO Cidade de Paraty at Lula Nordeste (Santos Basin).

Eleven new offshore wells started-up in August in the Santos and Campos Basins and, along with them, 47 new wells have already gone into operation in 2014. With the arrival of the Pipe Laying Support Vessel (PLSV) NO 105, from McDermott, on August 30, the company’s fleet reached 15 vessels. Increasing production in the pre-salt

Pre-salt production reached 532 thousand bpd in August. The higher daily production of 581 thousand barrels for the Santos and Campos Basins pre-salt was set on August 25. These volumes also include the share Petrobras operates for its partners, and was set following the start-up of well LL-28 on FPSO Cidade de Paraty, which increased the production of this unit to 95 thousand bpd, with three wells.

In compliance with the company’s maintenance schedule, some platforms underwent shutdowns in August, which led to the temporary suspension of 25 thousand bpd in average monthly production. Some of the units whose production was interrupted due to maintenance activities include P-56 at Marlim Sul field, and P-19 at Marlim field. These units have already resumed normal operations.

Daily production of 71.022 million cubic meters of gas in August rose by 4% from the previous month’s production of 68.3 million m³/d. The gas production operated by Petrobras, which includes the share operated for its partner companies, reached 80.151 million m³/day, up 4.7% from July’s production of 76.6 million m³/day. In addition, the beginning of gas exports from P-62 on August 30 was set.

Production abroad fell by 5.3% in August to 208,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boed) in relation to the previous month’s production of 219.7 thousand boed.

Average oil production abroad in August fell by 4.3% to 115 thousand barrels of oil per day (bpd), from the previous month’s production of 120.1 thousand bpd and average natural gas production abroad fell by 6.6% to 15.807 million m³/d, from the previous month’s production of 16.921 million m³/d.

These decreases are driven predominantly by lower gas and liquids (NGL and condensate) production at Lot 57, Kinteroni Field, Peru, stemming from lower demand for LNG exports from this country.

The total production reported to Brazil’s National Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels Agency (ANP) in August 2014 was 10,507,616.94 m³ of oil and 2,604,926.66 thousand m³ of gas. This production corresponds to the total production of the concessions where Petrobras is the operator. It does not include shale, NGL volumes and third parties’ production where Petrobras is not the operator.

Alon USA receives go ahead for Bakersfield, CA rail terminal and refinery project; Bakken light crude

Pipe: Advanced tech - Sat, 2014-09-13 07:00

Alon USA Energy, Inc. has received the necessary approval from the Kern County Board of Supervisors to construct a new rail facility at the Bakersfield refinery and to make modifications to the refinery that will allow it to process light crude—e.g., Bakken Crude. The permit allows Alon to construct a double rail loop from a new spur connection off of the existing BNSF Railway capable of receiving two unit trains (a unit train contains about 100 cars) per day of crude. The refinery’s 70,000 barrels per day (bpd) maximum crude processing capacity is not being increased.

The project also entails the addition of up to three boilers; construction of process unit upgrades and/ or modifications; repurposing of existing tankage; and relocation and modernization of existing Liquefied Propane Gas (LPG) truck rack and upgrades to the sales rack.

Alon expects to provide information on the cost of constructing the new rail facility and the expected crude-by-rail volumes at the time of its third quarter 2014 conference call. Construction of the rail facility is expected to be completed by the end of 2015.

Background. The existing refinery has been used as a petroleum refinery since 1932. Current refinery process units include crude distillation; delayed coking; hydrocracking; and catalytic reforming. Current products include gas oil, gasoline, diesel fuel, and petroleum coke. The refinery also includes a number of ancillary and support facilities including steam boilers, process heaters, cooling towers, storage tanks and interconnecting pipelines; and a terminal with truck and rail loading facilities.

Although the existing refinery has a maximum rated crude processing capacity of 70,000 bpd, due to a 2008 bankruptcy of the prior owner, crude oil refining was temporarily suspended. In 2011, the Alon Bakersfield Refinery resumed refining in numerous process units to convert gas oil produced by its affiliated refinery in Paramount, California into finished fuels. Alon intends to resume operation of several existing process units under existing permits, including a return to crude oil refining.

The overall objectives of the project are to (1) provide greater flexibility for the existing refinery to utilize a variety of crude oils that can be processed in order to better manage operational costs and to increase efficiency of onsite production; and (2) expand the existing crude terminal operations of the facility.

In the project’s Environmental Impact Review (EIR) submitted to the County, Alon noted the issues surrounding the volatility of Bakken crude, the recent rail accidents involving the crude, and the government’s current state of response.

Alon said it would work with the rail carriers delivering crude oil to the rail terminal to ensure compliance with any Emergency Order (EO) issued by the US Department of Transportation (DOT) related to requirements for rail carriers to notify State Emergency Response Commissions (SERCs), and others as specified by the EO, regarding the expected routing of the Project’s unit trains of Bakken crude oil. The notice will include, but not be limited to:

  1. reasonable estimate of the number of trains carrying 1,000,000 gallons or more of Bakken crude oil, per week and by county;

  2. with the crude oil identified and described in accordance with 49 CFR part 172, subpart C;

  3. with the emergency response information required by 49 CFR part 172, subpart G; and

  4. the routes over which the crude oil will be transported.

Alon USA Energy, Inc., headquartered in Dallas, Texas, is an independent refiner and marketer of petroleum products, operating primarily in the South Central, Southwestern and Western regions of the United States. Alon owns 100% of the general partner and approximately 82% of the limited partner interests in Alon USA Partners, LP, which owns a crude oil refinery in Texas with an aggregate crude oil throughput capacity of approximately 73,000 barrels per day.

In addition, Alon directly owns crude oil refineries in Louisiana and California, with an aggregate crude oil throughput capacity of approximately 144,000 barrels per day. Alon is a leading marketer of asphalt, which it distributes through its asphalt terminals predominately in the Western United States. Alon is the largest 7-Eleven licensee in the United States and operates approximately 300 convenience stores in Texas and New Mexico.


  • Kern County Alon Bakersfield Refinery Crude Flexibility Project documents

Will Modi Government's Draft <b>Transport</b> Bill make road <b>transport</b> safer?

Pipe: India - Sat, 2014-09-13 06:56
The Union Transport Ministry has prepared a Draft Bill to make reforms in the transport sector, which has been ignored by erstwhile governments.

Citroën-Studie Divine: Glitzer Flitzer

Pipe: Europe - Sat, 2014-09-13 01:04
Eine Mittelkonsole aus Weißgold und Kristalle in der Türverkleidung - auf dem Autosalon in Paris zeigt Citroën die schmucke Studie Divine DS. So schillernd wie der erste Auftritt ist die Zukunft des Wagens jedoch nicht.

Delhi govt to impose cess on liquor, cigarettes to fight pollution

Pipe: India - Sat, 2014-09-13 01:03
The Delhi government has decided to impose cess on cigarettes and liquor in an attempt to create urban transport fund which will be used to tackle ...