High-end per­for­mance automak­er Porsche is involved in the ear­ly-stage devel­op­ment of its own brand fuel for its vehi­cles. Car and Dri­ver reports the com­pa­ny has pro­duced eFu­el, a new liq­uid gaso­line alter­na­tive made from CO2 and Hydro­gen which per­forms like gaso­line only with 85% less pollution.

Porsche enthu­si­as­ti­cal­ly boasts eFu­el could replace gaso­line while giv­ing the inter­nal com­bus­tion engine some­thing new to run on.

Should eFu­el catch on, what would this mean for the oil and gas indus­try in Louisiana and oth­er oil-pro­duc­ing states?

Smith says mak­ing syn­thet­ic fuel is noth­ing new.  It involves chem­i­cal engi­neer­ing and Hydrotreater.

We have the PBF Refin­ery right here in New Orleans, actu­al­ly Chal­mette, it has a Hydrotreater, in fact, it’s a hun­dred years old and it’s been doing for a long time, so it knows how to do it!”

Smith says the biggest imped­i­ment to clean syn­thet­ic fuels is cost.

They want to take a look at con­vert­ing the Hydrotreater over to pro­duc­ing green-diesel (low-or-non Sul­phur con­tent diesel fuel) or jet fuel out of the refin­ery, well obvi­ous­ly that avoids a lot of cap­i­tal spending.

Smith says syn­thet­ic fuel pro­duc­tion is already going on in one way or anoth­er as an addi­tive in refin­ing or to blend with exist­ing car­bon-based fuels made from crude oil.

We already do some of this,” he explains.  “And we have a mea­sur­able chunk of the refin­ing capac­i­ty for the whole U.S.  Between us and Texas, Alaba­ma and Mis­sis­sip­pi, we have 57% of the refin­ing capac­i­ty of the Unit­ed States.

Per­haps the pre­dict­ed end of the inter­nal com­bus­tion engine is just a lit­tle premature.