New generation of clean diesel power ensures progress on global energy, environment and economic goals
This week, as the World Economic Forum (WEF) brings together global leaders in Davos, Switzerland, the future of the world's key systems are put under a microscope.
As strategies to achieving tomorrow's environment, economic, agriculture and mobility goals are explored, leaders should place a high value on continued progress from proven and available solutions, as well as the opportunities for transformational change in the future.
The Diesel Technology Forum brings together industry and environmental advocates, and local, state and national governments for the purpose of seeking common solutions that improve air quality, reduce energy consumption and enhance work productivity in key manufacturing and service sectors of the global economy.
At a time of great disruption and rapid change in technology, mobility and communications around the world, businesses and governments are working to harness these forces while still reliably delivering on present-day demands. The diesel engine and equipment manufacturers and fuel suppliers are meeting the challenges of the global economy today. Fully 15 key sectors of the global economy – including goods movement, public and personal transport, construction, mining, agriculture, and power generation, industrial as well as emergency services – all rely substantially on diesel engines.
Diversification of energy sources, sustaining economic growth, improving environmental quality and addressing climate change are considerable challenges. Thanks to the continuous improvement in efficiency and performance, when deployed in conjunction with ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel, the newest generation diesel engines offer a proven, cost-effective, energy-efficiency, near-zero-emission engine power choice. It is also one that is fully renewable-fuel capable.
On a global scale, clean diesel's potential for addressing those systems and priorities of the World Economic Forum's 2018 program is as follows:
The WEF seeks to shape a global mobility system that is safe, clean and inclusive. Diesel technology today contributes substantially toward this objective. Today's cleanest diesel engines offer near-zero emissions, having reduced particle emissions and nitrogen oxide emissions by more than 90% in all applications of diesel engines. This includes commercial transport, construction and agricultural applications, as well as industrial uses. Its widespread availability and reliability help advance this systems objective by bringing affordable mass transportation by road or rail to more people around the world.
No one-size-fits-all fuel or technology exists for the world's economy today, and we expect that to persist in the future. As the exploration and adoption of new energy technologies continue, we must ensure steady and unceasing progress to improve existing technologies that form the foundation of systems today – like diesel engines and equipment. Doing so will create a firm stage to bring new technologies on board.
Diesel engines are the most energy-efficient internal combustion engine. Their use offers the greatest near-term opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from key sectors of the economy, especially in the commercial transport sector.
Diesel technology and sustainability: While new diesel engines virtually eliminate emissions, enhancements to electrified or hybrid components and the use of renewable fuels further enhance clean diesel's sustainable contributions. These improvements lower the technology's carbon footprint without sacrificing reliability or availability.
Diesel's use with micro-grid technologies: Clean diesel engines provide certainty and reliability when used as part of new micro-grid systems that offer developing countries increased access to electricity. When used in concert with renewable energy from photovoltaic or wind technology, and battery storage systems, diesel power serves to make these systems more resilient. This desired reliability integrates seamlessly with renewable energy.
According to the WEF, by 2050 a global population of 9.8 billion will demand 70% more food than is consumed today. Innovations in farming and food production, as well as increased systems efficiency, are part of the solution. Today, diesel engines enable greater farm production with fewer inputs, and do so using less energy and with fewer emissions. Because diesel engines power three-fourths of all large agricultural machines and equipment, increasing agricultural production will require more efficient farming practices and continued advancements in farm technology.