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Sustainability calls from both sides of the Channel Christian Hartmann, GEIR President


The departure of the United Kingdom from the European Union raises a question as to the future supplies of UK Processed Fuel Oil (PFO) exports, also known as crudely processed waste-derived-fuel of Used Lubricating Oil (ULO) origin, that are sent to the port of Antwerp from across the Channel.


After successful lobbying by GEIR, the Flemish Public Waste Agency has amended and now properly enforces its PFO protocol, putting an end to the UK shipments to the port.


Several other locations in the European Union are indeed likely to accept PFO as fuel for their bunker market. GEIR therefore expects to visit more local and national waste authorities in the forthcoming months to continue to press the issue.


Meanwhile, GEIR representatives and representatives from the re-refining sector attended the ICIS 25th World Base Oils & Lubricants Conference organised


in London in February. If participants unsurprisingly discussed the balance of base oils supply and demand, two other topics drew a lot of attention this year: digitalisation and sustainability. The latter was for the first time addressed by all speakers. This clearly indicates that sustainability should no longer be considered as a simple trend. On the contrary, it has become a guiding principle that each industry must integrate in its business model. As a matter of fact, this year’s conference debates remarkably echo the strategic shift the European Commission announced in its Green Deal communication in late 2019, described as a strategy “where economic growth is decoupled from resource use”, but also aims at further decarbonisation.


Such like-mindedness between public authorities and the private sector is rare enough to be noted.


LINK www.geir-rerefining.org


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