PTQ Q1 2023 Issue

Achieving Fit for 55 emission reduction targets by 2030

Options available to oil refineries in reducing CO 2 emissions while providing a clearer vision on possible roadmaps

Fred Baars and Samiya Parvez Fluor B.V.

Emissions reduction protocols Numerous governments and companies around the world have committed to reducing their CO₂ footprint to ultimately achieve net-zero emissions. The European Commission (EC) has set a target to reduce CO₂ emissions by 55% by 2030 (relative to 1990) with a 2050 ‘net-zero’ target. CO₂ emissions are generally classified as Scope 1, 2 or 3. The Green House Gas protocol 1 refers to Scope 1-3 emis - sions for greenhouse gases in general. For the purposes of this discussion, only CO2 emissions are considered. As far as oil refineries are concerned, Scope 1 emissions relate to the amount of CO₂ that a refinery emits to produce saleable products. Scope 2 are the emissions related to the imported utilities that the refinery consumes, while Scope 3 emis - sions result from all the goods/services that the refinery purchases, sells, or disposes of. Oil refinery Scope 1 CO₂ emissions result from the burn - ing of refinery fuel (fuel gas and or natural gas) or from cer - tain processes such as hydrogen manufacturing via steam methane reforming (SMR). CO₂ emissions can be reduced by improving the energy efficiency of various process units, by replacing refinery fuels (natural gas, electricity), by CO₂

neutral sources such as green electricity or green hydro - gen (fuel substitution), by replacing crude oil feedstock, for example with vegetable oil or mixed plastic waste (MPW, feedstock substitution), or by capturing CO₂ from process streams and/or stacks and utilising or storing the CO₂. Fuel substitution also includes 'electrification' such as switching gas/steam turbines to electric motors and using e-boilers/ furnaces. Some measures may only affect the Scope 1 emissions, while others may impact Scope 1, 2 and 3 emis - sions shown in Table 1 . Feedstock substitution and most CO₂ utilisation mea - sures make the greatest contribution to Scope 3 emission reduction. Feedstock substitution may increase Scope 1 and 2 emissions depending on the source of the supple - mental utilities required, if any. The individual measures can be combined in various ways to arrive at a refinery decarbonisation programme. Such a programme includes:  A set of CO₂ abatement curves showing cumulative CO₂ removal against the cost of the individual measures, considering synergies or improvement opportunities when combining measures.  A roadmap which will picture how decarbonisation could develop with time, considering the duration of the imple - mentation of the various solutions (taking into account per - mitting, turnaround sequence, and construction time) and/ or expected time for technologies to have matured to an acceptable technical readiness level.  Full economic analyses of the roadmap, also including CO₂ credits/taxes. In addition to presenting various options available to oil refineries in the reduction of CO₂ emissions, elaboration on what a potential roadmap would look like is forthcom - ing. Assessing the full impact and potential of the options being considered is a complex exercise. The true poten - tial of various decarbonisation programmes will require a full life cycle (ensuring a seamless evaluation of the con - secutive steps in the process without gaps or overlaps) and economic analysis, which is outside the scope of this article. Our reference case is a typical European refinery process - ing 10 MTA of crude oil, producing motor fuels and having a delayed coker and hydrocracker as its main conversion units. The refinery will continue to produce motor fuels in the

Impact of decarbonisation measures on Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions

Decarbonisation measures

Scope 1 Scope 2

Scope 3

Energy efficiency Fuel substitution

- -

 

 

Feedstock substitution

≈ 

≈  ≈ 

 

CO₂ capture & use

Table 1

10 MTA oil refinery, Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions

Scope 1 Scope 2 1 Scope 3 2


CO₂ emissions,

1868 (6%)




KTA (93%) 1. Based on natural gas being used for power generation with an overall thermal efficiency of 50% 2. Based on combusting the refinery net production of LPG, naphtha, kerosene, diesel, fuel-oil, and coke, having an average carbon content of 85% (1%)

Table 2


PTQ Q1 2023

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