Mission Accomplished

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How switching from the use of diesel to hydrotreated vegetable oil for generator testing will help Kohler slash greenhouse gas emissions at its headquarters and manufacturing plant in west France.

Mission critical power plays a crucial role in a broad range of end-user applications – from data centers and telecoms through healthcare. But while equipment such as diesel generators continue to power the world, the urgency of the climate crisis means the use of such equipment needs to have less of an impact on the environment.

This responsibility is taken seriously at Kohler, where advances in engine optimization and aftertreatment technologies have significantly reduced the levels of polluting emissions over the past several years. More recently, segments of Kohler’s industrial generator line-up have been fully approved for use with Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) – a high-quality renewable fuel proven to reduce carbon emissions further.

HVO has all the advantages of a sustainable fuel source, with none of the disadvantages of first-generation biodiesels. While first-generation solutions is limited to 7% mix with fossil diesel and has a limited storage life of just six months, HVO can be used pure, is highly stable, with no sensitivity to oxidation, so that it can be stored long-term.

The similarity in HVO and fossil diesel characteristics further smooths the shift to biofuel because the two fuels can be mixed directly in the tank without issue. Therefore, no adaptations to the installed generators are required, allowing for the immediate rollout of renewable fuel to organizations seeking to reduce their carbon footprint.

Kohler switches to HVO for development testing in next step to Net Zero

While market uptake of HVO by end-users is increasing worldwide, Kohler has also looked to make the most of its capabilities internally as part of a commitment to more sustainable operations. As a result, it can be confirmed that all generating set development testing performed at Kohler’s headquarters in Brest, west France, now uses HVO.

This transition will have a positive impact. Lab-based generating set testing takes place at Brest throughout the year, with equipment such as the advanced KD Series put through its paces before deployment in facilities such as data centers. By switching from conventional diesel to renewable fuel, it is estimated that greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions will be reduced by 78%. Indeed, depending on the specific raw materials used to make the HVO, the reduction in GHG emissions could rise to as much as 90%.

Adopting HVO to perform development testing at Brest proves that Kohler is committed to more sustainable mission-critical power. Further initiatives and investments will undoubtedly follow as Kohler continues to create today’s generators for tomorrow’s generations.

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