Growing concerns regarding the depletion of energy resources and environmental degradation have increased interest in alternative energy sources. There is a growing focus on alternative fuels, such as biodiesel, to provide a sustainable diesel substitute for internal combustion engines and meet the increasing energy requirements. Also, there have been remarkable technological advancements in motor vehicles that run on renewable energy sources during the last decade. The increasing risk of fossil fuel depletion and the growing need for renewable energy sources drive the demand for biodiesel, which is a promising alternative to diesel oil since it has fats with properties similar to or better than diesel fuel.
Like petroleum-derived diesel, biodiesel can fuel compression-ignition (diesel) engines. Biodiesel can be blended with petroleum diesel in any percentage, including B100 (pure biodiesel) and the most common blend, B20 (a blend containing 20% biodiesel and 80% petroleum diesel). Using biodiesel, other alternative fuels, and advanced technologies to reduce fossil fuel consumption is expected to reduce transportation energy costs for businesses and consumers. For instance, the U.S. imported 3% of its petroleum in 2019, and the transportation sector accounts for approximately 30% of the total energy needs and 70% of petroleum consumption in the U.S. (Source: U.S. Department of Energy).
Biodiesel is produced in the U.S. and used in conventional diesel engines, directly substituting for or extending the supply of traditional petroleum diesel. Soybean biodiesel has a positive energy balance, meaning that it yields 4.56 units of energy for every unit of fossil energy consumed over its life cycle. Moreover, in the U.S., some local, state, and federal government agencies with fleets of school and transit buses, snowplows, garbage trucks, mail trucks, and military vehicles use biodiesel blends, usually B20. Fueling stations that sell biodiesel blends of B20 or higher to the public are available in nearly every state in the U.S. According to the USDA, biodiesel and renewable diesel consumption in the EU reached 17,822 million liters in 2018 and was forecasted to reach 18,660 million liters by 2021.
Biodiesel raises the cetane number of fuel and improves fuel lubricity, resulting in easier engine startup and reduced ignition delay. Diesel engines depend on the fuel’s lubricity to prevent moving parts from wearing prematurely. Improved lubricity reduces friction within the moving parts, preventing additional wear. These benefits boost the demand for biodiesel, driving the growth of the Green Chemicals Market across the globe, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 11.6% during the forecast period to be valued at $217.18 billion by 2029, according to the latest publication of Meticulous Research®.
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