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Do Fuel Manufacturers Have the Obligation to Clean Their Product? This Startup Thinks Yes

Nick Ferengi's picture
Founder and Editor CAGR Value

Nick is the editor of CAGRValue, a finance blog focused on growth investing, At CAGRValue, we explore the most exciting markets, industries and economies in terms of growth and try to pick out...

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Despite the raging pandemic, climate change remains a key global concern. Some environmentalists have welcomed the impact of COVID-19 in grounding global flights and cutting CO2 emissions, but ground transportation remains one of the main factors polluting our atmosphere. 

Fuel is highly toxic for the environment, releasing immense volumes of carbon dioxide (CO2) which is one of the primary greenhouse gases. According to the EPA, “Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from transportation account for about 28% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, making it the largest contributor of U.S. GHG emissions.” 

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While there’s widespread acknowledgment of the need to address vehicle emissions, most of the emphasis is placed on car manufacturers. Factories are pressed to produce more efficient engines, greener cars, and vehicles that can somehow cut their carbon emissions. Both the EPA and the DoT in the US have made car manufacturers the focus of their concern, issuing a joint statement setting standards for GHG emissions and fuel economy for cars, light trucks, heavy-duty trucks, and other transportation vehicles. 

These efforts are definitely valuable, but they’re overlooking another important player in global emissions: fuel itself. To be fair to car manufacturers, it’s not the car that’s causing pollution, but the fuel the car consumes. 

Fuel companies bear a share of the responsibility 

Are fuel manufacturers trying as hard as carmakers to reduce the damage caused by their product? It doesn’t seem like it. 

We can see how much R&D companies are willing to invest into developing lucrative fuel additives that boost performance, lubricate the engine, or increase fuel efficiency (or so it’s claimed), but there’s precious little effort going into environmentally-friendly fuels that cut emissions. 

Lawmakers and regulatory bodies tend to overlook the role of fuel, so there are no laws requiring fuel manufacturers to dedicate a set amount of their profits to developing cleaner fuels or pressing them to produce fuel that meets certain minimum standards. 

Even MPG-boosting fuel additives are just that: additives offered at the gas station as an afterthought, shifting all the cost and responsibility onto the consumer. Fuel companies don’t see the need to add these products at an earlier stage. 

But the tide may be changing. Enter FuelGems, a revolutionary nano-particle fuel additive that helps fuel manufacturers clean up their act. 

Better fuel benefits us all

FuelGems is based on a simple principle: inserting an environmentally-friendly fuel additive at the wholesale level to cut down on harmful emissions, without placing the obligation on consumers. Fuel manufacturers can add a small dose of FuelGems to their product before shipping it to gas stations and fleet owners, or gas station managers can add FuelGems to each pump tank before it’s sold. 

If FuelGems is widely adopted by fuel manufacturers, it can have a measurable impact on the environment. Climate change is no longer debateable; every year brings new headlines about extreme and fatal weather conditions, such as floods, avalanches, heatwaves, drought, wildfires, and hurricanes, all caused by changes in our climate. 

As well as CO2, today’s vehicle fuel produces chemical emissions such as benzene and sulfur dioxide, which can poison plants, rivers, and waterways, and nitrogen dioxide, which causes acid rain. FuelGems reduces consumption of gasoline by 8% to 9% by improving efficiency, thus these emissions are reduced by 8% to 9%. Also, FuelGems has been proven to cut CO2 emission by 8%, carbon monoxide (CO) emission by 15%, and unburnt hydrocarbons, particulate matter, and other harmful chemicals by up to 50%.

As well as damage to the planet, unaltered fuel emissions directly damage our health and cause hundreds of thousands of premature deaths each year. Benzene, particulate matter, and unburnt hydrocarbons can all be carcinogenic, as well as increasing the incidence of heart disease and auto-immune disorders. Sulfur dioxide harms the lungs, while CO is a known poison that kills approximately 430 Americans each year. Particulate matter enters the bloodstream through the lungs, carrying harmful chemical compounds around the body.  

Improving our fuel is a public health matter, but it doesn’t need to be complicated. 

Fuel additives are a simple solution to a complex problem

As well as cutting emissions, the FuelGems additive is extremely low-cost and easy to use. A tiny dose of 1-5 grams, 800x smaller than competing fuel additives, treats 260 gallons of fuel and adds approximately 2 cents to each gallon of gasoline. FuelGems costs up to 20x less than alternative, less-effective options.

Placing the emphasis on fuel manufacturers to add it at a wholesale level removes the burden from consumers, ensures that ratios are measured correctly, and increases takeup. Customers who might refuse to pay a few dollars for an optional fuel additive in the store wouldn’t notice the extra 2 cents per gallon on the pump price, plus they are a lot less likely to decline a pump choice that’s kinder to the environment, improves their health, and extends engine life as a bonus. 

Cleaner fuel has market appeal

Today’s rising young consumers are far more environmentally-conscious than their elders, and make purchase choices based on ethics and values. Clean fuel can thus serve as a point of differentiation for fuel manufacturers to stand out from the competition. With FuelGems, fuel manufacturers can take responsibility for their contribution to vehicle emissions, attract more customers, and help clean up the environment, all for very little cost and effort.

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