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Editor's award - Saab BioPower

Date: 24 January 2007

The fact that environmental issues are on the agenda for 2007 is no surprise; however, if 12 months ago we had said that one year on green issues would be bigger than duty of care, people would have laughed.

The rate at which this issue is growing within the whole motor industry (let alone the business car portion of it) certainly has been surprising, and now everyone is talking green. Yet there are precious few businesses going green (a bit like duty of care), and those that do make an effort should be praised.

Like Saab, which has devoted an extraordinary amount of effort to the subject with its BioPower programme, given it only has a two-car range. BioPower is Saab's name for its cars that run on bio-ethanol fuel, and as bio fuels are made from crops such as sugar beet, rather than from non-renewable fossil fuels, this is (in theory) one of the simplest ways the business car industry can cut its carbon emissions.

Saab has shown that the technology works and is producing the cars capable of running on 85% bio-ethanol. What's more, not only are the cars cleaner, but the fuel is more powerful than regular unleaded or even super unleaded, so the cars are quicker too.

What BioPower needs now is support from the Government to incentivise both the fuel and the re-filling infrastructure to help us all go green.