The time is now for rerefined base oil. Fear of climate change is reaching a crescendo, especially among young people, and crude oil prices are dancing around U.S $100 per barrel. It is the perfect moment for this valuable resource to go mainstream, according to industry insiders on both sides of the Atlantic.
The world consumes 37 million metric tons of lubricants per year. A small yet growing amount of that volume is collected and rerefined into base oil, while the rest is incinerated to produce energy, used as marine fuel or dumped illegally.
Lawmakers in Europe and North America, the two largest rerefining regions, are legislating to decarbonize the economy by more effectively managing waste and promoting resource circularity. Rerefined, or regenerated, waste oil has substantial sustainability benefits and is in harmony with carbon neutral goals on either side of the Atlantic.
Free Lube Reports
Being a “closed loop business,” as described by Craig Linington, Clean Harbors’ executive vice president responsible for U.S. rerefiner Safety-Kleen, rerefined base oil has a superior carbon footprint than virgin base oil. The company found that lubricants using rerefined base oil saved 7,500 metric tons of greenhouse gases for every 3.78 million liters used. Safety-Kleen collects more than 757 million liters per year of waste oil and is the largest rerefiner in North America. It produces Kleen+, an API Group II base oil, as well as passenger car motor oil.