UFOP estimates biodiesel sales in 2020 at 2.6 million tonnes

Openness of technology Prerequisite for meeting the GHG quota

Berlin, July 30, 2020. the Union for the Promotion of Oil and Protein Plants (UFOP) estimates the consumption of biodiesel at approx. 2.6 million t for 2020, compared to 2019, this would mean an increase of approx. 0.3 million t. However, this sales volume can only be achieved if sustainably certified hydrogenated vegetable oil (HVO) or vegetable oil can be processed in oil refineries for crediting to the GHG quota. This openness to technology must be continued after 2020, emphasises UFOP. This is because the maximum proportion of biodiesel in diesel fuel is limited to 7% by volume by the European standard for diesel fuel, EN 590. Hydrogenation processes enable oil refineries to enter into a green hydrogen strategy. The openness of the technology is a prerequisite for a gradual increase in the greenhouse gas reduction obligation. This sector coupling starts on the farmland and enables the timely start of a defossilisation of the fuel in existing fleets.  

The basis for the UFOP consumption estimate is the data provided by the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (BAFA) for the months January to May 2020. UFOP justifies the higher consumption compared to 2019 with the greenhouse gas reduction obligation which was increased from 4.5% to 6% as of 1 January 2020. According to the legal regulation, this obligation may only be fulfilled with greenhouse gas-reduced fuel quantities placed on the market or consumed in the calendar year 2020. Therefore, fuels such as natural gas (CNG), which are "lower in CO2" than fossil diesel or petrol, can also be credited. However, the UFOP's consumption estimate is subject to the provison that greenhouse gas reduction measures in oil production (so-called "upstream emission reduction" - UER) may be taken into account in 2020. Here the association is awaiting the result of the examination by the Federal Environment Agency. The Federal Environment Agency must recognise the projects. UFOP expects this assessment to be carried out with the necessary intensity.

UFOP comes to the conclusion that a corona-induced reduction in consumption cannot be determined due to the increased quota obligation as of 1 January 2020. On the contrary, in May a historic high of 9.1 % was reached with regard to the bio-share in the diesel market. This shows the development potential to make a noticeable contribution to climate protection in transport already today.

For this reason, the Federal Government must, within the framework of its Council Presidency, support the EU-wide introduction of a GHG quota system, which must be increased step by step from 2021 onwards, so that the consumption trend achieved in 2020 does not remain a one-off effect. This is because in 2021 the commitment period begins with the sanction regulations under the German Climate Protection Act, which are sensitive for the federal budget. Climate protection is already running out of time, the UFOP justifies its positions.