Business Opportunities

Business Opportunities

 

(A) Global Transport Urgencies

Global demand for passenger and freight transportation is trending strongly upward, driven by population and economic growth, and in particular by a rapidly expanding cohort of new middle-class consumers in non-OECD countries like China and India.

Transport generates the twin urgencies that are inherently related: –

Global Warming and Polluted Vehicle Exhaust

  1. Transport emits 8.1Gt of CO2, which is 25% of global CO2 emissions in 2019, and
  2. Vehicle exhaust is a major contributor to urban air pollution which is responsible for 3.4 million early deaths each year reported “The Lancet”, a leading medical journal.

These urgencies are expected to be worsened as the the global vehicle population, projected by IEA, is to increase from 1.45 billion in 2019 to reach 3 billion vehicles by 2050, inclusive of 502m EVs.

 

(B) Inadequate Mitigation Actions

The current mitigation actions taken by governments to redress the transport urgencies are to:-

  • Tighten fuel standards by regulating the sulfur content to 10mm,
  • Impose stricter CO2 emissions in new vehicles, and
  • Regulate the use of Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) to capture NOx, Diesel Particle Filter (DPF) for PM reduction, and Diesel Oxidative Catalyst (DOC) for the oxidation of incomplete combustion products.

 

These actions have been proven to be inadequate:-

  • The Real Urban Emissions Initiative has found growing discrepancies between the amount of emissions measured in diesel vehicle exhaust during type-approval tests and the amount that the vehicle emits in “real-world” operation in normal driving.
  • Excess real-world emissions are an important health issue and adversely impact public health, and
  • Transport and Environment reported that harmful levels of air pollution are endemic in European cities causing 400,000 premature deaths annually, and costing the EU € 1 trillion a year.

 

A new Study published in the Journal Environmental Research reports air pollution led to 8.7m deaths in 2018, which represent a “key contributor to the global burden of mortality and disease”. The Study is the result of collaboration between scientists at Harvard University, the University of Birmingham, the University of Leicester and University College London. The death toll exceeds the combined total of people who die globally each year from smoking tobacco plus those who die of malaria.

A major report by the Lancet in 2019, for example, found 4.2m annual deaths from air pollution coming from dust and wildfire smoke, as well as fossil fuel combustion.

 

(C) Limitation of Refinery Technology

The refinery has reached its limit in tightening the physical and chemical specifications of fuels, such as sulfur, aromatics and olefins.

The carbon mass in fuel remains on average above 82%.

The frequent incomplete combustion of carbon poses a great challenge to improve the mechanical and thermal efficiency of engines to achieve fuel savings and emissions reduction.

Modern vehicles must meet the tightened emissions and fuel efficiency regulations forcing auto makers to use direct injection, turbo-charging, new materials, advanced engine technology and more advanced emission control systems.

These measures require the fuel quality to be highly reactive and fast burn of which the current fuel quality is unable to deliver.

Moreover, the blend of biofuels required by law further compounds the challenge on fuel combustion efficiency of the current fuel quality.