It’s starting to become available as a retail offering at the pumps, so what are the benefits?
HVO is a synthetic diesel fuel made from renewable and sustainably sourced vegetable fats and oils. The fuel is created by collecting cooking oil waste and refining it to remove impurities using hydrogen – traditional diesel uses methanol in this process, making it less environmentally friendly.
It comes in different levels of purities, however many are creating HVO100 which is 100% vegetable oil and so is the greenest version available.
The end product is a fuel almost identical to regular diesel but with a reduced carbon footprint. According to research from fuel maker Neste, HVO can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 90% over the lifecycle of the fuel compared to fossil-based diesel.
Further research and field trials from Neste also show that HVO offers the following benefits over fossil diesel:
Up to 33% lower levels of fine particulates
Up to 30% less hydrocarbons
Up to 24% lower CO (carbon monoxide) emissions
Up to 9% less NOx (nitrogen oxides) emissions.
As a result, HVO is mainly used in larger HGVs and off-road machinery such as construction equipment and is a lower carbon option versus traditional fossil fuels.
Yes and no. As it is chemically similar to conventional diesel and meets regulatory requirements, HVO can theoretically be used in any diesel vehicle. However, not all vehicle manufacturers have approved its use at present and you should make sure any use will not interfere with vehicle manufacturers’ warranty period. Clearly if vehicles are outside of any warranty, this will not be an issue. As HVO isn’t universally used, drivers should check with their fleet manager or leasing company that their vehicle is approved for running on HVO100.
Currently there are just a handful of sites selling HVO diesel, although this number is set to grow. Most fleet operators currently using the fuel are generally larger vehicle fleets with their own bulk fuel facilities.
All Allstar fuel cards have the ability to purchase diesel and are therefore HVO enabled too. This makes the transition from traditional diesel to using HVO easy, as you can use the same card for both fuels.
Allstar fuel cards offer businesses a suite of benefits which aim to save your business money.
Firstly, they help you understand what you are spending on fuel. Secondly, with a fuel card you can keep tight controls on fuel purchasing and business mileage. Thirdly, thanks to the VAT- and HMRC-compliant invoices generated, fuel cards save your business on administration.
Further information on how fuel cards can save you money can be found here.