Environmental pollution is growing collaterally with the global energy demand. By 2040 the demand for energy is predicted to increase by 30%. In 2050 we will see more than two billion vehicles on the road and by this time the world's population is expected to reach 9.8 billion people. One of the greatest challenges in providing energy is the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere and the improvement of air quality. We will need more and more clean energy, also in transport, as it now accounts for 28% of global final energy demand.
As one of the biggest energy companies in the world, Shell is focused on providing energy over the next five to ten years, a perspective still based on fossil fuels, but it is also thinking ahead. It takes action to provide cleaner energy solutions that will meet the energy needs of the population and at the same time will help to reduce carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere. This is why Shell already invests in the development of alternative fuels and low-emission technologies. Globally the company will spend up to $2 billion annually on renewables in the coming years. By 2025, nearly 20 of Shell’s fuel business is expected to come from low-carbon fuels, including gas (LPG, CNG and LNG), biofuels, hydrogen and electricity.
Shell invests in the development of alternative fuels also on the Polish market. In 2017 the company has signed an agreement with high-powered charging network operator IONITY to offer charge points across ten European countries starting with 80 of its biggest highway stations. The first chargers in Poland, under both Shell and IONITY branding, will be implemented in 2019.
As a company present in Poland for over 25 years, Shell is actively engaged in actions that aim at dealing with one of the most pressing issues in the country – air quality. In 2018 Shell became a partner of UN Global Compact Network Poland and a member of the Steering Committee of the Sustainable Cities – A Healthy Life programme, which was created as a response to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The main direction of the programme's activity in Poland is improvement of air quality, sustainable transport and access to green areas.
From Poland’s perspective, air quality problems are a key concern. Shell is the world’s largest independent producer of liquefied natural gas (LNG). Gas comprises about half of Shell’s total production and is a core component of the company’s strategy to provide more and cleaner energy as it can be widely used in transport and in heating. In Poland, due to a highly developed logistic market there is a very large potential for LNG development in transport. Poland can look for inspiration from China as it is a country with a similar energy mix that is now ambitiously fighting for air quality and reducing emissions, with already visible results. In the latest Five-Year Plan, the government of China has committed to raise the share of natural gas in primary energy from 6% today to 10% by 2020 and is step by step reducing coal consumption, which currently meets two-thirds of the country's energy needs.
LNG and other alternative fuels as a way to improve air quality were discussed during a panel discussion Shell organised at the Krynica Economic Forum 2018. As pointed out, compared to diesel or heavy fuel oil, natural gas is much cleaner burning and can have an immediate impact on air quality: up to 25% less CO2, up to 90% less nitrogen oxide (NOx), negligible quantity of sulphur and particulates. Consequently, a long-term commitment to gas can result in multiple benefits for the country.
Shell wants to engage the public into the search for new technological and energy solutions by organising Shell Eco-marathon. This international contest that has been held since 1985 is addressed at students, future engineers whose task is to design, construct and drive the most energy-efficient vehicle. Shell believes that this initiative encourages young people to think about future fuels and think big about the global energy demand and ways of meeting society’s needs. By supporting young generation of inventors Shell contributes to providing innovative energy solutions in the future. Shell wants to engage the public into the search for new technological and energy solutions by organising Shell Eco-marathon (in the picture: SEM 2018)