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Certa opens Ireland’s 1st renewable diesel station in Dublin

From left, Andrew Graham, managing director of Certa, and Grace Cunningham, Certa’s head of retail (Photo: Certa)

Certa announced Oct. 17 that it has become the first energy operator in Ireland to open a fully-fledged hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) fuel station. HVO is also referred to as renewable diesel.

Certa’s new “Forecourt of the Future” in Liffey Valley in Dublin cost over 1 million euros (USD$1.06 million) to build and is the first in Ireland to make HVO available at all pumps alongside diesel and unleaded gasoline.

HVO is produced from waste plant matter and can be used as a direct replacement for diesel without any need for vehicle or engine modifications to help motorists lower their carbon emissions by up to 90 percent.

Certa has already started to upgrade its network of 41 unmanned pay-at-the-pump forecourts to offer HVO at all fuel pumps alongside other fuels.

The first of the newly upgraded forecourts are scheduled to open in Clarehall, Clearwater, Ballymount, Ashbourne and Drogheda before the end of the year.

Certa is also the first fuel supplier in Ireland to present HVO pricing on its forecourt pricing totems.

“Our goal is to make it easy for motorists to transition to HVO as a renewable alternative to diesel and to make this biofuel as accessible as we can to help motorists to reduce their carbon emissions,” said Andrew Graham, the managing director of Certa. “Our immediate priority is to facilitate demand where it is greatest by upgrading a cluster of existing forecourts in the Dublin region to offer HVO at all pumps alongside diesel and unleaded petrol. We plan to complete the upgrading of our entire network by the end of 2024.”

Certa is currently matching the price of HVO with diesel at its new forecourt in Liffey Valley and said it is committed to achieving future price parity.

Certa also said it is rolling out a plan that will enable its entire network of 41 forecourts to generate their own power from solar energy after its recent deal with solar and renewable energy specialists Alternative Energy Ireland.

Solar PV panels have already been installed at five of its forecourts, and Certa said it is committed to reducing its carbon emissions to net zero by 2050 or sooner.

It said the ongoing installation of solar PV across its network is taking place as part of its energy-transition program and drive to become the country’s most progressive energy company.

Sixty-six solar PV panels have been installed at the newly opened Certa forecourt in Liffey Valley to help power the site, including its carwash and two electric vehicle (EV) fast chargers with speeds of up to 180 kWh. The installation is estimated to save 7 metric tons of carbon a year.

Certa’s decision to place HVO on the same footing as other fuels follows the successful opening of a standalone HVO pump at the Certa Lee Tunnel forecourt in Cork earlier this year and its decision to transition its entire fleet of 100 delivery vehicles from diesel to HVO as a low-carbon biofuel.

It has also helped a growing number of leading businesses and events to decarbonize and to transition to HVO as a renewable fuel, including Amazon Web Services, John Sisk & Son Ltd., M50 Truck and Van Centre, The National Ploughing Championships, the Irish Open and Electric Picnic.

The machinery involved in the construction of the new Certa forecourt in Liffey Valley was fully fueled by HVO.

The development of the site has also come full circle with the provision of a dedicated heavy-goods vehicle (HGV) lane for HGV drivers and businesses committed to fueling their vehicles with HVO.

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