What the Mining, Construction and Excavation World Is Doing to Better the Environment
With respect to greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide (40 billion tons in 2014 alone) is the pollutant we produce the most of each year.
That sum was a 0.7 percent increase from 2013. Yet in 2015, there was no increase in the amount of carbon dioxide released into the air and only a small rise of 0.2 percent in 2016.
Some scientists are beginning to wonder if a global effort to reduce greenhouse gases is having an effect: “The amount of CO2 we put into the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels, gas flaring, and cement production has held steady for three years in a row, neither increasing nor decreasing significantly.”
The increase may be shrinking, but the sum total of CO2 we put into the air annually — from a variety of sources — is still extraordinary.
While diesel is a better fuel for efficiency and overall cleanliness, its biggest downfall is CO2 emissions. A sum of 440 million metric tons of CO2 is released into the air by diesel (distillate) fuel engines each year.
Diesel More Efficient and Cleaner than Gasoline with One Exception: CO2
Upon combustion, diesel fuel releases 98 percent less carbon monoxide than gasoline engines without a catalytic converter, 97 percent less hydrocarbon, 69 percent less oxides of nitrogen and 15 percent less carbon dioxide.
For comparison, even gasoline cars with a catalytic converter produce 40 percent more carbon monoxide and 16 percent more hydrocarbons than diesel.
Diesel is 15 percent more efficient as a fuel and about 20 percent more efficient than gasoline engines. However, diesel produces about three pounds more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than does the combustion of gasoline.
Climate Change: CO2 and Greenhouse Effect
While other pollutants are more toxic than CO2, few others contribute as greatly to the greenhouse effect.
Unlike CO2, which doesn’t condense with water, pollutants that do condense cannot contribute as significantly to the greenhouse effect, since water molecules in the air carry these gases back to Earth.
According to NASA, “a study led by GISS co-author Gavin Schmidt that has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Geophysical Research shows that carbon dioxide accounts for about 20 percent of the greenhouse effect.”
Diesel is a critical fuel with advantages over almost all other fossil and biomass fuels. It is clean, very clean, but it can be made remarkably clean with a fuel catalyst. A Rentar Fuel Catalyst outperforms other pre-combustion catalysts, reducing CO2 emissions by 40 percent.
Heavy-equipment industries cannot justify the loss of power associated with other fossil fuels, alternative fuel sources, and electric motors. And, the fact is, it’s not necessary. By knocking 40 percent off the CO2 emissions, the carbon dioxide emissions from heavy equipment will be a drop in the bucket compared to things like electricity production; on-road, gasoline-powered vehicles and — ironically — natural sources.