Less biodiesel consumed in Germany in 1st half of 2021
The amount of diesel fuel consumed by road traffic in Germany was lower in the first half of 2021 than it was in first half of 2020. Accordingly, the use of biodiesel dropped by one fifth. On average, biodiesel was blended in at 7.1 percent, which compares to 8.1 percent in the previous period.
In the first half of 2021, the use of biodiesel for blending amounted to around 1.14 million metric tons (approximately 342.2 million gallons). This translates to a 19.6 percent drop over 2020. If the trend in consumption were to continue along these lines in the second half of the year, the total use of biodiesel for blending would reach 2.4 million tons (720.5 million gallons) in 2021, according to calculations made by Agrarmarkt Informations-Gesellschaft (mbH). This figure compares to 3 million tons (900.6 million gallons) in 2020.
The Union zur Förderung von Oel- und Proteinpflanzen e. V. (UFOP) has pointed out that the quota years 2020 and 2021 are not comparable although mineral oil companies had and have to meet a greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction target of 6 percent in both years. In 2020, all EU member states were required to implement the 6 percent GHG reduction target in accordance with European Fuel Quality Directive regulations. However, quotas could not be carried over from the 2020 obligation year, but they can be brought forward again in 2021. The UFOP expects that the possibility to carry GHG quotas over will curb demand for biodiesel this year.
The UFOP finds it difficult to make a final assessment of how biodiesel use is going to develop in 2021, because the GHG reduction target will be raised to 7 percent in 2022 and diesel consumption will tend to decline as a result of increasing e-mobility. State funding of e-mobility will first and foremost lead to a reduction in the number of diesel passenger cars. Against this background, the level of GHG reduction quotas that will be defined for the 2022 quota year as part of the RED II implementation is of importance for the exports of the German biodiesel industry. The time pressure for climate protection is strong. The increasingly smaller residual budget for GHG emissions permitted until 2030 also clearly illustrates the need to act. Consequently, the GHG mitigation potential of certified biofuels should be used as the EU’s contribution towards meeting the 1.5 degree target in 2030.