Is Your Fuel Advanced?
Three decades of additive-market disruption and honing expertise in low-carbon fuels can help make it so.
The word “advanced” conveys the ideas of modernity, something recently developed or ahead of its time in development or progress, as well as a high level of skill or knowledge. As the founder and president of Advanced Fuel Solutions, I have committed to living up to my company’s name by, first, being a disruptor. This is a moniker I carry for which I will never apologize. In fact, I encourage my team, clients and strategic partners to adopt disruptive behavior as well—constructive disruption, of course.
Sticking our heads in the sand hoping legislative pressures go away is not the solution. Identifying the threats before they are existential is the key. Being acutely aware of your space and your company’s position within it starts with maintaining an open mind. This means discarding what Daniel Burrus, someone who I believe is a notable American futurist, calls “rearview mirror thinking.” In other words, don’t milk the moment, because it’s easier to lead than to try catching up when others have already responded and are enjoying the benefits associated with being proactive.
With the liquid-fuels landscape being threatened by other energy sources that are still not practical for broad-based integration, strategic collaboration is more important today than ever before. Beyond being recognized as anything but an out-of-the-box additive supplier, AFS has succeeded in seeing what many others do not.
“Other’s Look, We See” was a proper phrase describing AFS three decades ago while we were building premium diesel formulations supported by intelligent, effective marketing campaigns. This helped differentiate market leaders like us from the laggards. Early adoption to improve baseline diesel quality presented market differentiation and growth for both buyers and sellers of these next-generation fuels.
Early on, I recognized the value of biodiesel as being a future blendstock designed to complement conventional diesel fuel and heating oil. Today that foresight pays dividends as a more expansive portfolio of low-carbon products like biodiesel, renewable diesel and sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) are no longer tethered to the question of “what if?” but rather now evoke a “bring-it-on” decarbonization strategy across the nation.
AFS is a consultative additive supplier navigating between fuel buyers and sellers to improve clients’ market positions. No shelf additive package will accomplish that. We differentiate ourselves by offering an unmatched consultative approach to additive use. Our clientele is a diverse group that includes heating-oil jobbers, diesel distributors, terminal operators, traders, renewable fuel producers, marketers, fleets and government agencies.
We can introduce custom AFS formulas anywhere in the supply chain. We search for and challenge our partners to develop innovative technologies that help us help our customers differentiate and prosper. How the additive will be stored, handled and blended on site also makes a difference in success. Those of you who know me also know that I have long been a vocal proponent of good housekeeping as an integral component to the quality management of fuel-storage systems.
Throughout the years, AFS’s services and products have evolved to meet changing fuel slates, hardware and regulatory demands. As low-carbon liquid fuels continue to make their way into the national supply chain, we will continue to work collaboratively with companies that have the capability to research and develop products we can rely on to serve those downstream.
For three decades, I have worked to understand the challenges and opportunities surrounding fuel quality and low-carbon fuels. The expertise I have gained as a result of this focused 30-plus years can be leveraged by companies still deliberating or resisting the move toward low-carbon products that progressive fuel users across the country demand.
I never use low-carbon fuels as a scare tactic to sell more additives because additives were necessary long before low-carbon fuels were available. And additives will continue to be required for many years as fuels and the quality, technical and regulatory environments in which they operate continue to evolve. Naysayers become adopters when they find out low-carbon fuels do, in fact, deliver on their promise.
The expertise I have gained over the past three decades has been integrated with the entire AFS team. This is an insurance policy, so to speak, that my longtime practice of disrupting the business-as-usual mentality—a mindset that hinders progress—will carry on to the next generation.
Author: Paul Nazzaro
Advanced Fuel Solutions