What are the current most important issues surrounding sustainability in the base oils and lubricants industry?
Let me start by saying that I believe that we – as an industry – are in a good position to make visible progress in our sustainability efforts. But we need to work together to do this and direct our attention towards several issues. Firstly, we should focus on the potential of high quality lubricants and how they can improve energy and fuel savings while reducing waste, especially in the use phase. As around 20-30% of the energy produced worldwide is lost due to friction, lubricants play an essential role in lowering this number and consequently emissions. Secondly, we should find ways to expand recycling and re-refining technologies. Lastly, we should create mechanisms that advance the move towards sustainability on an industry-wide level.
How can the industry accelerate its move towards sustainability?
The whole value chain needs to be committed to common sustainability goals. Broadly, this means investing in new technologies, securing the availability of high quality – and also renewable-based – products at scale and designing them in a way that makes them feasible for use on the market. We at Neste are wholly committed to taking clear steps that allow us to stay at the forefront of this move.
Can you give examples of your activities in the area of sustainability?
Figures show that we are currently helping our customers to reduce annual GHG emission by over 9 million tons. By using renewable fuels – and doubling capacity in our Singapore plant – we are on way to reach an annual reduction target of 20 million tons by 2030. Additionally, ramping up chemical recycling will allow us to process 1 million tons of plastic waste by the end of this decade. We are also on the right track to reduce the carbon footprint of our production well ahead of the EU’s environmental, energy and climate targets.