Meeting the Climate Challenge with Clean Diesel

Jan 28, 2014, 15:27 ET from Diesel Technology Forum

Near-zero emissions, superior energy efficiency highlighted at National Conference on Science Policy and Environment- Building Climate Solutions

WASHINGTON, Jan. 28, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- At the start of the 14th National Conference and Global Forum on Science, Policy and the Environment, Building Climate Solutions this week in Arlington, VA, the Diesel Technology Forum issued the following statement:


"Today we kick off a week of talking about meeting the climate challenge with clean diesel technology, emphasizing the energy efficiency of diesel power, it's new environmental transformation, and what role it is playing in helping to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases today," said Allen Schaeffer, executive director of the Maryland-based educational group.

Clean Diesel Technology and meeting the Climate Challenges of Today and Tomorrow
"Diesel engine, vehicle and equipment manufacturers are meeting the climate challenge today with clean diesel -- by fundamentally transforming diesel engines to use cleaner fuels, making engines more efficient (lower CO2) and also in pursuing solutions for reducing short term climate agents (soot, black carbon) from existing engines and equipment," noted Schaeffer. 

To meet more stringent fuel economy and CO2 requirements, manufacturers are seeing a dramatic increase in demand for clean diesel powered cars and SUVs that typically deliver thirty percent or better fuel efficiency than a comparable gasoline engine.  The 2.9 Million Diesel cars and trucks sold and on the road from 2005-2012 saved 7.6 million tonnes of CO2 and 29 Million barrels of crude oil and have the emissions savings equivalent to removing 1.6 Million vehicles from the road for a year.

"New commercial trucks in the US today are using about 5 percent less fuel than previous generations and have near zero levels of other emissions, all in an effort to meet the first-ever fuel economy and CO2 standards issued by EPA and NHTSA.  When fully implemented, over the life of the vehicle will cut oil consumption by more than 500 million barrels, result in more than $50 billion in net benefits, and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 250 million metric tons.

"Because the U.S. fleet of trucks consumes about 22 billion gallons of diesel fuel every year of the sheer magnitude of commercial vehicles operating in the United States, this regulation has the potential to result in significant environmental and energy efficiency gains.  And, because diesel provides a unique technology platform suitable for expanded use of hybrid powertrains and lower-carbon renewable fuels – additional new technology will be available for reducing GHG emissions in the future," Schaeffer said. 

This year's conference Building Climate Solutions attracts 1200 key individuals from the fields of sciences and engineering, government and policy and business and civil society to advance solutions for climate change.  Other key stakeholders participating include government agencies such as NASA, EPA, the Forest Service and the Centers for Disease Control and the National Institute for Standards and Technology. 

"The rapid advancements in moving to near-zero emissions and lower emissions of greenhouse gases are changes that apply across the board to diesel engines- from the newest clean diesel passenger car to the new tier 4 technology mining machines and marine vessels or freight locomotives.  There are many technologies and approaches to helping address the climate challenge being discussed here, but clean diesel power is an area of special interest because of its significant role around the world- powering two thirds of all farm and construction equipment, all freight locomotives, more than two-thirds of all transit buses," noted Schaeffer.

"Over the last few years there has been increasing interest in emissions of black carbon as a short-lived climate agent.  Scientific and policymaking communities have concluded that black carbon plays a role in climate change by heating our planet and altering precipitation patterns.  Diesel engines have been identified as one of the many global sources of black carbon emissions.  Today the U.S. is estimated to account for about five percent of all black carbon emissions, and is expected to account for only two percent of global on-road vehicle emissions in just six years -- by 2020.  This remarkable progress is as a result of new clean diesel technology that includes changes in domestic fuel composition along with advances in engine design and emissions control technology," said Schaeffer.   

"Our nation is in the increasingly favorable position of being able to determine our energy future, from expanded use of domestically produced oil and natural gas to renewable energy sources such as high-quality bio-based diesel fuels.  All of these fuels will be important in the future, and the diesel engine is the foundation for taking advantage of this position for energy efficient goods movement, construction or farming no matter what fuel is burned or in what type of vehicle or machine using it," said Schaeffer.


The Diesel Technology Forum is a non-profit national organization dedicated to raising awareness about the importance of diesel engines, fuel and technology, and working with policymakers and other stakeholders on common solutions.  Forum members are leaders in clean diesel technology. 

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For more information visit

Allen Schaeffer
Executive Director
(301) 668-7230

SOURCE Diesel Technology Forum