Electric vehicles may be the shiny new object, but speakers at the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo in January confirmed that the diesel engine will continue dominating the market for a long time.
John Eichberger, Executive Director of the Fuels Institute, illustrated this point with federal data:
- 77% of all distillate energy is used by the over-the-road freight market.
- A 14% increase in registered diesel vehicles is expected by 2035 — including more passenger models.
- Diesel vehicle miles traveled are projected to increase 23% by 2035.
“Diesel is not dead, period,” he said.
That’s why trucksstops and travel plazas should keep trying to capture this market share.
It's not just for trucking fleets anymore.
Diesel options will soon be available for some of the most popular passenger vehicles, including the Chevy Tahoe and Suburban, GMC Yukon, and Jeep Wrangler Rubicon and Gladiator. Other brands have already been on the market for a few years, including the Ford F-150, Ram 1500, Chevy Silverado 1500 and Mazda CX-5.
Biodiesel is a drop-in solution for all of these customers — and you. Truckstops don’t need to change their infrastructure to offer biodiesel blends, and customers don’t need to modify anything to take advantage of them either.
And its quality is not a compromise. In fact, biodiesel is recognized by ASTM International, which has created specifications for the fuel with ASTM D6751. The biodiesel spec requires a minimum Cetane number of 47, whereas the petroleum diesel spec is 40. Higher Cetane equals a shorter ignition time and better engine performance.
Biodiesel also adds lubricity that is lacking in ULSD, which helps fuel injection systems and engines run smoother, quieter and cooler.
Another factor to keep in mind is the rising emphasis by fleets and drivers on reducing their carbon footprint.
George Survant, Senior Director of Fleet Relations for NTEA — the Association for the Work Truck Industry — shared survey results finding biodiesel to be the most widely used alternative fuel among work truck fleets and the one in which they’re most interested.
“It’s become the standard against which many other alternative fuels are measured,” Survant said.
With diesel engines still dominant and clean air regulations spreading (not to mention companies developing their own sustainability plans), biodiesel is an easy way to meet multiple customers’ demands.
If you’d like diversify your fuel supply to reach a wider audience, I’d be happy to discuss it: firstname.lastname@example.org.
// Renewable Energy Group is leading the energy industry’s transition to sustainability by transforming renewable resources into high-quality, cleaner fuels. REG is an international producer of cleaner fuels and North America’s largest producer of biodiesel. REG utilizes an integrated procurement, distribution and logistics network to operate 13 biorefineries. REG is meeting the growing global demand for lower-carbon fuels and leading the way to a more sustainable future. Learn more about Renewable Energy Group.
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