News and insights, Sustainability
3 minute read
What are renewable fuels?
The main difference between renewable fuels and fossil fuels is where they come from. Fossil fuels are made from non-renewable fossil resources and release the carbon from these fuels into the atmosphere. Renewable fuels are made from previously used materials (waste and residues) or from oil extracted from plants that can re-absorb CO2 from the air through photosynthesis.
What are Neste’s renewable fuels made of?
We use wide variety of different sustainably produced and globally sourced raw materials at our refineries in Finland, the Netherlands and Singapore.
Neste has focused on waste and residues for over a decade. They represent more than 90% of our global renewable raw material inputs.
The 3 largest raw material categories based on their current and estimated shares of Neste’s total annual renewable raw material inputs include used cooking oil, animal fat from food industry waste and vegetable oil processing waste and residues.
Thanks to our patented NEXBTL refining technology, Neste can use a wide variety of oils and fats, even lower-quality wastes and residues, to produce products with consistent high quality.
The raw material inputs in our refining may vary over time, from market to market and from product to product, based on availability, price, the market and customer-specific requirements and preferences. Our extensive raw material portfolio provides us with flexibility to meet these requirements, while enabling us to produce renewable products with consistent high quality.
How are our renewable fuels produced?
Neste uses its proprietary NEXBTL technology to produce renewable fuels from a wide range of low quality raw materials.
Watch the video below to discover the full value chain.
Will we have enough renewable fuels to make a real difference?
We continue to work towards increasing the availability of lower-quality waste and residue raw materials, while developing technologies to diversify our portfolio with completely new types of raw materials. We plan to introduce new sustainable raw materials, such as:
Agricultural and forest harvesting waste and residues.
Suitable renewable materials from municipal solid waste streams.
By using these new raw materials, global renewable fuel production could reach over 1000 megatons of oil equivalent by 2040, which would be enough to replace all fossil fuels used in aviation and maritime transport, as well as a substantial part of road transport.
In the future, we aim to use additional types of raw materials besides waste and residues. We are looking into leveraging the energy potential of CO2-absorbing algae, developing novel vegetable oils from advanced agricultural concepts, and even using CO2 itself as a raw material.
eFuels, made from water and CO2 can help store renewable power from where it produced to where it is needed in a fuel that can be used in the existing fleet.