Diesel is part of the solution for tackling climate change, growing the economy and delivering cleaner air now.
January 28, 2020 | Diesel Technology Forum
With 2020, a new decade begins, and from this vantage point, a year where major developments are happening in the diesel fuels, engine and equipment sectors.
Before the end of the new decade, more efficient commercial vehicles will have eliminated 1.3 billion tons of greenhouse gas emissions and the majority of these benefits will be delivered by diesel technology.
With 2020, a new decade begins, and from this vantage point, a year where major developments are happening in the diesel fuels, engine and equipment sectors. These include diesel technology set to get even cleaner, a global transition to cleaner distillate shipping fuels is in place, more fuel-efficient diesel pickup truck and SUV choices have been announced for consumers in North America, growing adoption of new technology diesel engines in construction, farm, industrial, rail and marine applications, and the use of renewable biodiesel fuels growing to boost the future for diesel technology.
Diesel engines for heavy-duty vehicles are set to get even nearer-to-zero emissions in the future. EPA kicked off the new year with the next step in the Cleaner Trucks Initiative (CTI), an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. The rulemaking, which is set to be finalized in late 2020/early 2021 will establish new emissions testing and performance requirements for heavy-duty trucks. California is pursuing its own version of a new rule, expected later this year. In both cases, for diesel – it pushes the envelope even nearer-to-zero. And it’s more than just criteria pollutants. Before the end of the new decade, more efficient commercial vehicles will have eliminated 1.3 billion tons of greenhouse gas emissions and the majority of these benefits will be delivered by diesel technology.
More diesel engine choices announced for U.S. auto consumers in the most popular segments. General Motors announced its new 3.0L Duramax diesel will be debuting in the Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban 2021 models later this year while GMC echoed with the same engine option available in its popular Yukon and Yukon XL versions. On top of that FCA’s Jeep brand has a new diesel option in the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon and one arriving soon in the new Gladiator pickup truck. This is on top of the first full year availability of diesel engine options in full size pickup trucks like the Ram 1500 and Chevy Silverado 1500, and last year’s launch of the Mazda CX-5 SKYACTIV Diesel.
Advanced renewable biofuels use grows in public and private fleets. Highlighting the key capabilities of diesel engines, the interest and use of blends of biodiesel and drop-in replacement low-carbon advanced biofuels is growing outside of California where the low carbon fuel standard (LCFS) has introduced large scale quantities of advanced renewable biodiesel fuels in recent years. The ability to use advanced biofuels in diverse existing vehicle and equipment populations is a key asset for diesel technology in the sustainable future. Neste and Renewable Energy Group (REG) are leaders in producing and integrating these proven fuels into the U.S. market.
Engine and equipment manufacturers are seeing growth. In the farm, construction, power generation and marine space, the adoption of new technology engines, machines and equipment that are of the near-zero emissions generation is growing. In many instances these engine technologies are the foundation of connected, jobsite and farm productivity systems that make work more efficient and productive.
The global transition to cleaner distillate shipping fuels is a success - thus far. Talk of gloom and doom in the diesel fuel markets – price spikes, shortages in the U.S. have not materialized. Implementation of new global shipping rules started January 1 known as 2020 IMO, requires ocean going vessel operators to use low sulfur fuels instead of marine bunker fuel. According to the EIA Short Term Energy Outlook diesel wholesale margins, were projected to rise from an average of $0.43/gal in 2019 to a forecast peak of $.053 in March 2020, settling at average of $0.50/gal in 2020. EIA expects diesel margins to decline to $0.49/gal in 2021. If everything holds true, this will be a notable success for the global oil industry.
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