New research confirms Arq’s potential to improve the environmental footprint of RFO
Environmental research indicates that overall, barrel for barrel, Arq Fuel™ has the potential to out-performs RFO by over 40%
London, August 2020 – Anthesis, a world class global sustainability consultant, has performed a review of the environmental impact both Arq product and process. This first directional life-cycle analysis has indicated that Arq’s plans for a full-scale plant, on a per barrel basis, will show quantifiable environmental benefits, potentially outperforming traditional RFO products by 12% to 89% across our four most important environmental metrics*.
On a barrel for barrel basis, producing unblended Arq Fuel™ has a materially lower impact than producing RFO in three of the four impact categories and has an observably lower global warming impact, albeit well within the range of uncertainty. Most importantly, results indicate that Arq Fuel’s estimated global warming potential (kg per bbl CO2 eq) at future full-scale operation are estimated to be, barrel for barrel, 12% better than RFO.
The reason that this measure is important is because it measures a direct comparison between the source of the both fuels and the immediate benefits derived from Arq’s novel process. Customers will benefit from the lower environmental impacts of Arq Fuel when it is blended into other oils and therefore displace traditional oils.
The European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (EC JRC) for science and knowledge services, developed a weighting approach to summarise an LCA report in a single score.
Applying this EC JRC single score approach to Arq’s environmental footprint, for each barrel of RFO displaced by Arq, there is a potential environmental benefit of over 40%.
This comes on top of the very strong environmental results from The Energy & Environmental Research Center at the University of North Dakota which showed that a 20% blend of Arq Fuel with RFO emits c.10% lower SO2 and over 20% lower NOx than RFO alone.
Based on this data, Arq will continue working to optimise the first plant at Corbin as well as to design further efficiencies into future full-scale plants. These improvements are made possible through a sustained commitment to continuous research and technology innovation.
Key to Arq’s purpose is to make better use of the world’s scarce natural resources. An additional benefit from reclaiming valuable hydrocarbons from waste sites is that the land will later be restored to more productive communal or agricultural use.
Arq’s science and innovation team continue to research the unique properties of Arq Fuel, making progress in the marine and utility markets, as well as new applications and composite materials in the non-combustible markets.
* Source: Anthesis Global Sustainability Consultants – Arq Fuel™ / RFO comparative report. Comparative report uncertainty is estimated at +/- 20% on both Arq Fuel and RFO. A future full ISO 14044 LCA study is required to support this.