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State of play: Alternative fuels

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May 4, 2023
Illustration of a gas can with a dollar sign etched on the side.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Alternative fuels are gaining ground as more startups dig for ways to power machines and vehicles without fossil fuels.

Why it matters: Investors are clamoring to fund the future of fuel, even though most of the technology and science remains in early stages.

Fuel replacements: Hydrogen and ammonia are both considered drop-in fuels because they can run on lightly retrofitted vehicle engines without major changes. Understandably, oil and gas majors have expressed interest in backing some promising hydrogen startups.

Novel fuels: Other options, like sustainable aviation fuel, are looking toward entirely new ways to power machinery and vehicles. Though decades-old, novel interpretations of nuclear energy have also been growing in popularity among climate investors.

Electric fuels: For some lighter-weight vehicles and machinery, going all-electric makes the most sense for fossil-fuel alternatives.

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