EU states to reconsider CO2 truck law approval

  • Market: Biofuels, Hydrogen, Oil products
  • 02/07/24

EU diplomats may reconsider formally the approval of the regulation requiring manufacturers to cut average emissions of new heavy duty vehicles (HDVs) and coaches on 9 February, after failing today to achieve a qualified majority of EU member states over concerns that the law insufficiently provides for CO2 neutral fuels.

A diplomat told Argus that formal approval of the regulation "might" now take place on 9 February. Non-governmental organisation Transport & Environment said the blockage was triggered by the German liberal FDP party that is calling for "a loophole for e-fuels and biofuels — including climate-wrecking palm oil".

"German truck manufacturers don't want a loophole for e-fuels or biofuels," T&E's freight policy manager Fedor Unterlohner said. "The FDP is going against the interests of its own domestic auto industry which wants regulatory certainty, not diversions into dead-end technologies", he added.

The same diplomat said that EU decisions should not be influenced by internal party politics in a single member state, without referring to Germany.

It is still unclear whether Belgium, which currently chairs the EU's council of ministers, can secure the required qualified majority, consisting of at least 55pc, or 15, of EU's 27 states themselves representing at least 65pc of the EU population. In addition to Germany, other countries — including Italy, Hungary, and Poland — have previously expressed concerns over emission laws effectively phasing out the internal combustion engine (ICE).

Germany stated in October 2023 that the definition of a zero-emission vehicle would allow for "hydrogen combustion engines in addition to battery electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles". And the country approved the definition for allowing for ICE technology to remain a "permissible option for manufacturers and users — ideally running on climate-neutral fuels".

Negotiators for the European Parliament and EU states provisionally agreed, in January, on the regulation.

Cuts for trucks weighing over 7.5t and for coaches start at 45pc in 2030, 65pc in 2035 and 90pc in 2040, compared with average CO2 emissions of manufacturers' reported emissions in 2019. But the regulation only contains a "review", also exploring the issue of HDVs running "exclusively" on CO2-neutral fuels.


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02/21/24

Andersons crush margins to drop after record 4Q

Andersons crush margins to drop after record 4Q

Houston, 21 February (Argus) — US agribusiness conglomerate The Andersons posted record fourth-quarter profit in its renewables business but expects a seasonally weak first quarter for ethanol crush margins. Pretax profit in the renewables business rose to $33mn in the fourth quarter, up from $13mn a year earlier, driven by record production and improved yields at the company's four ethanol plants, chief executive Patrick Bowe said Wednesday on a conference call. "Much improved" ethanol crush margins in the fourth quarter have narrowed in the current quarter on seasonally weak demand, which is typical for the business, Bowe said. Crush margins may improve starting in the second quarter on industry maintenance shutdowns and seasonally higher driving demand in the spring, he said. The renewable diesel feedstocks business contributed to profit growth in the fourth quarter and full year, and the company is looking to accelerate gains with an acquisition, particularly a producer of lower carbon intensity (CI) feedstocks. The Andersons is weighing investments that would reduce the CI of ethanol production, including carbon sequestration for the company's three ethanol plants in the eastern US, where the geology is favorable, Bowe said. Producing lower CI ethanol would allow the company to produce sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) from ethanol, he said. "There really isn't any ethanol-to-jet without low carbon ethanol," Bowe said. "And that's what we're really focused on is making sure that we're able to participate in that market when it happens." By Matthew Cope Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Auge de nearshoring en México depende del 2024


02/20/24
News
02/20/24

Auge de nearshoring en México depende del 2024

Mexico City, 20 February (Argus) — Las políticas energéticas de México durante este año de elecciones presidenciales ayudarán a determinar si el país está preparado para alcanzar el tan ansiado auge del nearshoring, ya que se espera que el desarrollo de parques industriales se expanda en 2024. México podría exportar cerca de $168 mil millones adicionales entre 2023 y 2028 como resultado de la tendencia de trasladar cadenas de producción más cerca de EE.UU. para evitar retrasos logísticos como los observados durante la pandemia, dijo Alejandro Cervantes Llamas, jefe de investigación cuantitativa del banco mexicano Banorte. Pero la mayor parte de estas exportaciones fluirán durante los últimos tres años de dicho período, una vez que las instalaciones y la infraestructura industrial planificadas sean operativas. Alrededor de $10 mil millones adicionales del total de $168 mil millones en exportaciones llegaron en 2023, añadió Banorte. Mientras tanto, la Cámara de Comercio Internacional (CCI) estima que México verá $38.6 millones de inversión extranjera directa relacionada con el nearshoring en 2024. Hasta el momento solo se ha anunciado 40pc del desarrollo esperado, pero es probable que surjan más proyectos en 2024, dijo Ramsé Gutiérrez, vicepresidente de asesoramiento financiero de inversiones Franklin Templeton México. Sin embargo, el éxito del nearshoring depende de la capacidad que tenga México para proporcionar a la industria en auge la infraestructura necesaria, especialmente electricidad y gas natural, lo que a su vez impulsaría a la demanda de combustibles para motores. La demanda de importaciones de gas por parte de México aumentará de 7.8 Bcf/d en 2023 a 9.3 Bcf/d en 2026, según un estudio realizado por el operador estatal de gasoductos Cenagas el año pasado. Energía para el nearshoring México también necesita invertir $116.8 mil millones — $7.78 mil millones/año en promedio durante los próximos 15 años — en generación y distribución de energía para satisfacer la creciente demanda, de acuerdo con un informe reciente de CCI Mexico. El informe sostiene que, con un crecimiento anual del PIB de 2.4pc, México necesita construir 58,900km de líneas de transmisión y añadir 34.5 GW en capacidad de generación nueva, así como 14.1 GW en capacidad de generación de sustitución hasta 2037. Las estimaciones se basan en factores de carga de 87pc ciclo combinado de gas, de 25pc para plantas solares y 38pc para generación eólica. Además, México necesita otros 800km de líneas/año por punto de crecimiento adicional del PIB. También debe desarrollar una industria alrededor del Corredor Interoceánico del Istmo de Tehuantepec con enlaces ferroviarios, carreteros y gasoductos desde el océano Pacífico hasta el Golfo de México, así como en la península de Yucatán, dijo Osmar Zavaleta, decano asociado de investigación en la Escuela de Negocios Tec de Monterrey. Pero esto será un reto continuo, dado que las empresas extranjeras tienen profundos compromisos con las energías renovables, en tanto que las iniciativas gubernamentales de los últimos años han dificultado el desarrollo de proyectos solares y eólicos privados. Los proyectos de generación solar han experimentado un auge en los últimos años, a medida que la regulación presiona a los proyectos más grandes del sector privado. Este segmento menos regulado está limitado a una capacidad de generación de 500 kW. Sergio Arguelles, presidente de la Asociación Mexicana de Parques Industriales, lleva más de un año y medio ejerciendo presión sobre las autoridades mexicanas para aumentar la energía renovable autogenerada permitida a más de 500 kW. Con las elecciones presidenciales de México previstas para junio, tanto la candidata Claudia Sheinbaum como su principal competidora Xóchitl Gálvez han indicado su apoyo al crecimiento acelerado de las energías renovables para el próximo periodo presidencial de seis años que finaliza en 2030. Con Sheinbaum, quien encabeza las recientes encuestas con una ventaja de dos dígitos, es más probable ver el crecimiento de la capacidad verde impulsado por la empresa estatal de electricidad CFE, mientras que Gálvez apoya una mayor participación del sector privado. Otro reto al que se enfrenta México sigue siendo la inseguridad, especialmente en los estados fronterizos del norte, donde la inversión extranjera directa más fluida dependerá de la capacidad del gobierno para controlar a las organizaciones criminales de la región. Por James Young Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Marine fuel global weekly market update


02/20/24
News
02/20/24

Marine fuel global weekly market update

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Alternative marine fuels 16 February CMA CGM takes first of 10 LNG-fueled vessels France-based shipping company CMA CGM will take delivery of the first of a series of 10 LNG-fueled container ships this month. 16 February Egypt to load 8-10 more LNG cargoes by end-winter: Eni Egypt could load 8-10 more LNG cargoes "before the end of the winter season", Eni said today. 16 February South Korean refiners opt to co-process biofuels A lack of regional mandates and retreating European demand for hydrotreated biofuels this year has pushed back timelines for new capacity start-ups in Asia-Pacific, driving South Korean refiners to favour co-processing rather than standalone biofuel plants. 15 February WSC proposes fossil-green fuel price gap close The World Shipping Council (WSC) proposed a green balance mechanism to close the price gap between conventional and sustainable marine fuels. 15 February Singapore LNG bunker sales at 5-month high Singapore LNG bunker sales reached a five-month high in January, according to data from Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), driven by competitive prices compared with conventional marine fuel. 15 February Lake Charles Methanol to build $3.2bn low-CO2 plant Lake Charles Methanol II announced plans to build a $3.2bn plant that will produce low-carbon intensity methanol and other chemicals at the Port of Lake Charles. 15 February Singapore LNG bunker sales at 5-month high Singapore LNG bunker sales reached a five-month high in January, according to data from Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), driven by competitive prices compared with conventional marine fuel. 15 February Maritime sector most promising for H2 in transport: HE The maritime sector provides most opportunities for use of hydrogen-based synthetic fuels in the transport sector, according to a survey carried out by industry body Hydrogen Europe. 15 February JBS says its B100 biodiesel has same yield as diesel Global meat producer JBS said that its 100pc biodiesel fuel (B100) — unblended biodiesel — has an energy efficiency equivalent to diesel and emits up to 80pc less carbon dioxide, based on tests on one of its trucks. 15 February Off-spec bio-blends widen pricing spread The range of prices for marine biodiesel blends in Europe has widened as cheaper product that does not meet the region's diesel engine specifications — as defined by the European EN14214 standard — gains market share. 15 February China turns to domestic ammonia output boost Increased domestic production capacity and weaker downstream industrial demand has the potential to weigh on China's ammonia imports this year. 15 February Mabanaft to build green methanol plant in Australia Hamburg-based Mabanaft has received approval to build a new green methanol plant in Port Augusta, located in southern Australia. 14 February Emerging LNG markets to absorb extra supply: Shell Emerging gas markets in China, southeast and south Asia will absorb much of the increase in LNG supply for the rest of this and the next decade, having been constrained by high prices in 2022-23, Shell said in its global LNG outlook, published today. 14 February Avoid offsets, ETS for carbon removals: Study Carbon dioxide removal (CDR) activities should be promoted for the "right reasons" and at the "right scale", and should not be financed through carbon offset credits or included in emissions trading systems (ETS), according to a recent study by the Institute for Responsible Carbon Removal at American University. 14 February Indonesia ammonia production at risk of curtailments Indonesian ammonia producers could be forced to consider production curtailments or outages if southeast Asian loading prices fall much further. 14 February More than 100 US biogas plants to start up in 2024 The American Biogas Council said 96 new biogas projects with a combined production capacity of 66,000 ft³/minute (9.82bn m³/yr) became operational in the US in 2023. 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February ARA oil products stocks increase on weaker demand Independently-held oil product stocks at the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) trading hub hit their highest since mid-August, reaching 5.67mn t in the week to 14 February, according to consultancy Insights Global, as demand in the region slowed down. 15 February Panama Canal freezes customer priority ranking The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) will freeze its customer priority ranking used to secure transit slots while temporary water-saving measures remain in place. 15 February Singapore's oil product stocks inch higher Singapore's overall oil product inventories inched upwards, driven by a surge in middle distillate imports, despite both light and heavy distillate stocks falling close to a 2½ month low, showed latest data from Enterprise Singapore. 14 February Petrobras working to rebuy refinery: CEO Brazil's state-controlled Petrobras is in talks with Abu Dhabi's Mubadala to buy the 300,000 b/d Mataripe refinery back, 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Whiting, Indiana, refinery. 13 February Outages hit Ecuador's 2023 refinery production Ecuador's three oil refineries of Esmeraldas, La Libertad and Shushufindi processed an average 146,235 b/d of crude in 2023, down by 5.3pc compared with the previous year, according to operator state-owned Petroecuador's data. 13 February Japan's bonded marine fuel sales fall in 2023 Japan sold less bonded marine fuel in 2023 compared with a year earlier, pressured by limited supply from domestic refineries owing to a series of disruptions. 12 February Suriname refinery undergoing 7-week turnaround Suriname's state-owned oil company Staatsolie's 15,000 b/d Tout Lui Faut refinery will undergo a seven-week turnaround starting on 16 February, Staatsolie said. 12 February US refiners shrug off dip in earnings US refiners' fourth-quarter financial results so far reveal a dip in earnings from the bumper profits of 2022, but the sector remains on a profitable footing and confident. 12 February India's MRPL plans refinery maintenance in Aug-Sep Indian state-controlled refiner MRPL plans to conduct a maintenance turnaround at one unit of its 311,000 b/d Mangalore refinery for around three weeks during August-September, a top official from the company told Argus. 12 February Atlantic basin diesel faces tight spring European diesel markets could be facing a tight spring as refinery maintenance and disruptions in the Red Sea make resupply difficult and expensive. Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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EU industry leaders want support for green shift


02/20/24
News
02/20/24

EU industry leaders want support for green shift

London, 20 February (Argus) — A group of over 70 industry leaders today called for a competition-based deal to ensure the bloc's industry can continue competing globally while implementing the EU's green deal. The green deal aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 55pc by 2030, compared with a 1990 baseline. Among 10 points listed in a declaration signed in Antwerp, Belgium, industry leaders called for streamlined legislation, simplified state aid rules and a "new spirit of law-making" to incentivise investment as well as "cohesive" policy implementation. The signatories came from various sectors, including steel, chemicals, paper, mining, glass, metals, refineries, cement, fertilisers and industrial gases. Energy costs in Europe are "too high to compete", driven not only by commodity prices, but also by regulatory charges, according to the signatories. The next European Commission leadership needs to prioritise new projects for "abundant and affordable low-carbon renewable and nuclear energy" as well as grid expansion for hydrogen and other renewables, according to industry leaders. "Climate neutrality cannot be met without renewable liquid fuels and products," according to Liana Gouta, director-general of refiners' association FuelsEurope. "These renewable fuels and products should be produced in Europe." Gouta called for an EU strategy for the transition of liquid fuels and products to help shift industry from fossil fuels to renewable fuels and products. "We want to avoid dependence on third countries, de-industrialisation," director-general of steel association Eurofer Axel Eggert said. Eggert also called for a robust trade policy to ensure a level playing field. The declaration is timed ahead of EU elections in June that will see a newly-constituted European Parliament and new European Commission. By Dafydd ab Iago Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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UK steel decarbonisation strategy 'piecemeal': E3G


02/20/24
News
02/20/24

UK steel decarbonisation strategy 'piecemeal': E3G

London, 20 February (Argus) — The UK government's steel decarbonisation strategy is "piecemeal" and lacks a broader industrial policy, independent climate change think-tank E3G said today. It said the UK is "not far behind" European counterparts with steel decarbonisation, citing deals to transition current blast furnace-based sites, implementation of a carbon border adjustment mechanism and tightening emissions trading allowances. But the UK has made little progress on power grid expansion, and has been slow to develop demand-side mechanisms, E3G said. It is vital that electricity costs are brought down for industrial users, which will otherwise face "fierce" competition from overseas producers that pay less for power. The government should also move to increase steel scrap processing and establish supply of hydrogen and green iron — without adequate scrap supply, a 100pc EAF-based sector will rely on imports, E3G said. The think-tank said the government should establish a long-term strategy "that includes a vision for the future role of the steel sector in the UK economy and how it will be integrated in other UK manufacturing sectors". Just becoming a secondary steelmaker will mean the country cannot produce all the requisite grades for its automotive industry, it added. "There is a risk that without the ability to produce a diverse suite of products, some steel companies may suffer from negative commercial outcomes from weaker business models," it said. In its steel policy scorecard comparison, E3G rated the UK C+ for its policy direction and clarity, and B- for its public funding. By Colin Richardson Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.