Autogas Ready to Help
The plan also foresees a very intelligent system of incentives to attract more Parisians to public transportation, although capacity is already maxed out at peak hours at certain “hot spots”. Especially the assistance to join a combination of car and bike sharing schemes or a grant to buy an electric assisted bicycle are innovative. The incentives to buy new cars encompass electric, hybrid electric and natural gas vehicles. Regrettably the plan has a flaw: it has completely forgotten to mention Autogas! A considerable omission, we think, given the existing LPG-infrastructure has already been put in place. Stations along the Peripherique surrounding the inner city centre and a total of over 100 in the Paris area alone make Autogas the most readily available clean alternative in the metropolitan region. The French car manufacturers have picked LPG back up after their hiatus, reviving their efforts around the clean fuel with the introduction of a turbo-charged three-cylinder engine. This will offer the perfect replacement for the smaller diesel engines, today still powering the majority of the ubiquitious French hatchback. Besides being readily available and considerably lower carbon than either diesel or gasoline (21% CO2-emissions from well to wheel) Autogas in fact combines the best traits of either conventional fuel, being nearly as efficient as diesel when used in modern engines (direct injection – DI)while at the same time emitting but a fraction of NOX and 80 to 98% fewer particles than DI gasoline technology. We hope the Mayor’s office recognises this mistake quickly and includes Autogas in their plans and give it the opportunity to contribute to cleaning up the city’s air.