To Meet 2030 Climate Goals, We Must Reduce Carbon Emissions Now
In April 2021, the Biden Administration unveiled an ambitious plan to limit global warming: a pledge to cut America’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 50% to 52% by 2030 compared to 2005 levels.
To accomplish this, carbon emissions will need to be reduced in a variety of areas, including in buildings, industrial settings, agriculture and electricity production. Transportation will have a special role to play, since it’s the leading cause of GHG emissions in the U.S., and one of the biggest contributors worldwide.
Exactly how the U.S. will cut emissions by half, and whether politics will affect any part of the president’s goal, remains to be seen. What is known, however, is that something must be done quickly. Climate experts say the world must make "rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes" to limit global warming by 2030 to avoid the consequences of climate change.
That’s why it’s important to adopt solutions that can make a difference right now. Biodiesel is one of those difference-makers. It is a high-quality, lower-carbon fuel that can be used in diesel vehicles and existing fuel infrastructure without modifications.
In other words, fleets and other diesel operators can use biodiesel to reduce emissions right now, rather than waiting for future technologies.
Accumulating Carbon Emissions
One reason it’s important to act today is the cumulative nature of greenhouse gases. Once in the atmosphere, they persist for many years, meaning every year’s GHG emissions add to the emissions of previous years. This is why negative impacts from greenhouse gases in the atmosphere can increase dramatically over time.
Fortunately, the reverse is also true. Every emission we avoid has a cumulative, multi-year effect — a beneficial one.
Chevron Renewable Energy Group has been talking about this for a while, and other organizations are now doing so too. In fact, NPR had a story about the topic. If it’s difficult to grasp, try thinking about it the same way as a retirement account.
If you put $1,000 per year into a 401(k) with an 8% rate of return, you wouldn’t have $10,000 after 10 years. You’d have almost $14,500 — and the first year’s $1,000 deposit would have contributed almost $2,000 to the 10-year total, while the 10th year’s $1,000 would have contributed only $1,000 to the total.
This is why retirement professionals advise us to start saving when we’re young rather than waiting until we’re older. This same rationale is also why waiting to adopt cleaner-burning fuels will dramatically decrease the cumulative emissions savings that fleets could start banking now.
A Simple Step Today
Instead of waiting to invest in the environment, commercial and public fleets should seek out lower-carbon fuels they can use today. This includes biodiesel and a blend of biodiesel and renewable diesel that we call UltraClean BlenDTM. Chevron Renewable Energy Group’s bio-based diesel products can help reduce carbon emissions by up to 88% compared with petroleum diesel.
Fleets that switch to lower carbon fuels are also investing in their businesses. Lowering the carbon intensity of fleets is not a passing fad. Governments are passing clean air regulations, the private sector is adopting their own lower carbon policies and they are asking their partners to participate in those policies to achieve their targets. Fleets are regularly responding to lower carbon requirements in RFPs, and biodiesel is giving them a leg up on the competition.
With its performance and maintenance benefits, biodiesel can help with fleet operations. The availability of biodiesel can help fleets meet clean air regulations, win bids with lower carbon requirements and potentially improve brand perception and goodwill in the communities they serve through their lower carbon efforts. Chevron Renewable Energy Group biodiesel offers all of those benefits plus our supply capabilities, technical expertise and global platform.
Lower Carbon Now
The U.S. federal government is looking to take the next step in the country’s efforts to slow the negative effects of climate change. However, regardless of any governmental policy, we need action. Climate change affects not just the atmosphere, but also people’s health and livelihoods.
Biodiesel is one of the easiest ways to have an immediate impact with vehicle carbon emissions today.
If you’d like to learn more about the efforts Chevron Renewable Energy Group is taking, feel free to contact us at at (844) 405-0160 or [email protected].
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