Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (ZERA) has urged SADC countries to promote the use of cleaner diesel fuel with lower sulphur content to curb outdoor pollution.
Addressing stakeholders at a workshop held in Harare on Thursday by Standards Association of Zimbabwe (SAZ), ZERA fuel technologist Herbert Mataruka said adopting cleaner fuel will help in fighting climate change and outdoor pollution.
“The major drive to implementing standards on fuel is fighting the elephant in the room, climate change and outdoor pollution,” he said.
Mutaruka said SADC countries have to harmonise low sulphur fuels standards particularly in countries that have joint energy and fuel supply facilities.
“A SADC Low Sulphur Fuels Workshop sponsored by United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) held in Johannesburg recently recommended and supported harmonised low sulphur fuel standards with the sub-region particularly among countries that have joint import or supply facilities,” he said.
Mataruka said countries using the Beira terminal in Mozambique have set a goal to switch from diesel 500 to diesel 10 by 2020.
“A low sulphur workshop of countries using the Beira terminal that was held in Maputo in November 2016 commended countries such as Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe who use the Beira terminal to switch from diesel 500 to diesel 50 by December 2017 and diesel 10 by 2020,” Mataruka said.
Mutaruka said low sulphur diesel is both beneficial to the environment and is cost effective.
“Low sulphur fuels are of great benefit to health, the environment, curbing climate change and are of great significance in vehicle technology. The price convergence is from about $1.37 to $1.22, a saving of about 15cents for a cleaner fuel”.
Mataruka added that on the global and African map, the colours for Zimbabwe have changed, reflecting how Zimbabwe in particular is successfully reaching for the UNEP initiative in implementing the use of low sulphur diesel.