3 Aug 2011

Energy authority champions biofuels

3:45 pm on 3 August 2011

The Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) says businesses around the country need to prioritise fuel efficiency for both environmental and financial reasons.

EECA transport spokesperson Elizabeth Yeaman told a business and climate change conference in Wellington on Tuesday that about 3% of transport fuel demand worldwide was from biofuels.

In New Zealand, on the other hand, renewable transport energy sources such as electricity and biofuels accounted for only 0 .2%.

At the moment, only some Gull and Mobil petrol stations offer biodiesel. Ms Yeaman said she would like to see other oil companies get on board so that biofuels became more mainstream.

Engineering services group Downer EDI says it has seen huge benefits from reducing its fuel use, cutting fuel consumption by 23% in 2010, which resulted in an overall saving of almost $4 million.

Downer New Zealand executive general manager John Beattie says the company's fuel reduction strategies include selecting the appropriate vehicle for each job, ensuring drivers were competent and monitoring their performance regularly, using GPS, and monitoring and metering fuels.

Mr Beattie says Downer is aiming to reduce its fuel consumption by another 7% in 2011.