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Petrobras CEO calls bio jet fuel key for de-carbonizing

March 03/2021

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The chief executive of Brazil's state-run oil company Petrobras, Roberto Castello Branco, said biofuels, especially those for the aviation industry, will be key for "de-carbonizing" transportation in coming years, a goal for energy transition, reported Reuters.

Brazil, a major corn and sugarcane producer and a country with a more diversified energy matrix than its neighbors, is also a large consumer of domestic ethanol, with pure gasoline supplies a rarity.

"For the future, we are evolving to bio jet fuel, which will be very important for de-carbonizing transportation, so we are focusing on ships and aircraft," he said at the CERAWeek energy conference on Tuesday.

Aviation biofuels are biomass-derived fuels from plants or waste used to power aircrafts. They produce lower CO2 emissions than conventional jet fuel.

Petrobras is among the region's largest exporters of low-sulfur marine fuel. Competitors including Venezuela's PDVSA and Mexico's Pemex have not showed much progress in recent years in producing low-sulfur fuels that exports markets demand.

Brazil increased 4.4% its imports of refined products, mainly diesel, to 34.2 million cubic meters in 2019 but also boosted fuel exports 2.6% that year, including fuels for the maritime and aviation industries, to 13.7 million cubic meters, according to figures by the nation's oil regulator.

Asked about how a giant company such as Petrobras, which has focused on keeping production costs low, can move faster to achieve energy transition, Castello Branco said that "elephants can dance and fly as well."

"Petrobras was known as an elephant, a state oil company very big and too bureaucratic, very slow-moving. We are looking for fast solutions and diagnosis for solving problems as we are living in a technology-driven world."

The company aims to capture 25 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) through 2025 while reducing emissions from its fossil fuel operations.

As MRC informed before, Brazil's state-run oil company Petrobras is seeking 800 million reais (USD152 million) in compensation from engineering group Odebrecht in arbitration proceedings over its alleged violation of the shareholders agreement in petrochemical company Braskem.

We remind that Petrobras may need more than a year to divest its stake in Braskem, said Andrea Almeida, Petrobras CFO, in early July, 2020. She said during the company"s recent webinar that Petrobras plans to give more time for potential investors to make offers for the company"s assets, including for its refineries and stakes at its petrochemical and fuel distribution affiliates. The divestment of Petrobras"s stake in Braskem in 2020 would be desirable but "might not be possible" as the COVID-19 pandemic has changed market conditions, she said. The company plans to close part of its refinery sales in 2021. In December, Roberto Castello Branco, CEO of Petrobras, said that he wants to sell the company"s stake in Braskem within a year. Petrobras owns 32.15% of Braskem.

We also remind that Braskem is no longer pursuing a petrochemical project, which would have included an ethane cracker, in West Virginia. And the company is seeking to sell the land that would have housed the cracker. The project, announced in 2013, had been on Braskem"s back burner for several years.

Ethylene and propylene are feedstocks for producing polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP).

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 2,220,640 tonnes in 2020, up by 2% year on year. Only shipments of low density polyethylene (LDPE) and high density polyethylene (HDPE) increased. At the same time, polypropylene (PP) shipments to the Russian market reached 1 240,000 tonnes in 2020 (calculated using the formula: production, minus exports, plus imports, excluding producers' inventories as of 1 January, 2020). Supply of exclusively PP random copolymer increased.

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Petrobras is an integrated energy firm. Petrobras" activities include exploration, exploitation and production of oil from reservoir wells, shale and other rocks as well as refining, processing, trade and transport of oil and oil products, natural gas and other fluid hydrocarbons, in addition to other energy-related activities.

Author:Margaret Volkova
Tags:PP, PE, crude and gaz condensate, PP random copolymer, propylene, LDPE, HDPE, ethylene, petrochemistry, Braskem, Petrobras, Brazil, Russia.
Category:General News
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