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Reducing carbon intensity in our value chain

Repsol is also firmly committed to improving energy efficiency in its processes to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. At the refinery in A Corua (Spain) we have obtained the first global certification for this type of facility according to international standard 'ISO 50001 Energy Management'.

Energy efficiency

In 2011, we have conducted energy audits at over 40 centers and 500 service stations in search of energy consumption savings.

For Repsol, energy efficiency is one of the main channels to mitigate CO2 emissions and for streamlining operation of its plants and activities. To achieve this, we continued to implement a global energy management system for the company, with four main elements:

  • Medium term objective

    The different company units establish internal annual and medium term objectives for energy intensity associated with their annual efficiency plans.

  • Annual energy efficiency plans in all company Units

    All company business units develop detailed energy efficiency plans, identifying specific savings actions. In 2011, over 200 savings actions were taken in our facilities and activities.

  • Certification under the ISO 50001 international standard

    Repsol has chosen to systematically standardize and implement an energy saving system is under the ISO 50001 benchmark standard. Under this standard, the A Corua refinery was the first facility of this type in the world to certify its energy management system.

  • Conducting energy audits as a tool to visualize potential operating improvements

    In 2011, we continued to conduct energy audits in the different company units to find savings and opportunities for lower consumption. Specifically, we conducted internal audits in three industrial refining centers, as well as an inter-center audit at the A Corua refinery, seven audits in Chemical plants, two audits of refining activities in Peru and 11 audits in different LPG units worldwide. Energy audits were conducted in over 40 facilities and almost 500 service stations in Spain.

In order to reduce process-related energy consumption, the Repsol Technology Center has lines of work dedicated to detecting improvement opportunities in the units, both on an operating level (streamlining our processes) and identifying specific investments with an important potential for reducing CO2 emissions. We are working on providing methodologies that aid energy management in refineries and chemical plants, systematically detecting potential energy savings in process plants. These tools allow us to obtain a ranking of potential savings and prioritize the allocation of resources for improvement actions.

Repsol A Corua refinery (Spain) achieves the ISO 50001 certificate

Our energy efficiency activities included our achievement of the new ISO 50001 standard for the Energy Management System at the A Corua refinery, in July 2011.

This is the first facility in the world of this kind certified by a third party under this standard. The project was conducted in several stages, involving people from a variety of functions.

Implementing this system allows us to:

  • Consolidate energy management criteria and best practices at the refinery, apply them uniformly across areas, systematize work methods, prioritize improvement opportunities and ensure that these efficiency criteria are present in all activities undertaken at the facility by integrating them with other management systems
  • Reduce energy consumption by incorporating all energy management-related activities into a cycle of continuous improvement. To do this, we have developed tools to identify, analyze and implement savings opportunities, and efficiently monitor energy consumption and related processes or activities.

This system is part of Repsol's commitment to efficiently using energy at its facilities to preserve natural resources, reduce atmospheric emissions and contribute to mitigating climate change effects.

The result of this project not only leads to a reduction in environmental impact but also decreases costs. Global energy management, including daily operation control, contributes to reducing energy costs by optimizing our energy consumption, both in terms of efficiency (using or improving installed technology) and monitoring of prices and types of energy.

After this successful experience, we will extend this program to the Puertollano refinery by implementing an Energy Management System to obtain ISO 50001 certification.

Carbon management throughout our value chain

At Repsol's Technology Division we research how to reduce the carbon footprint of our processes and products. The asphalt area has developed more eco-efficient products and processes, enabling us to reduce CO2 emissions when manufacturing and recycling roads. In the field of engines and energy for transport, technology prospecting is the starting point for developing new products and adapting existing ones, in order to evolve alongside the automobile industry towards sustainable transport.

In 2011, we updated our technology prospecting survey, covering the latest trends in both conventional heat engines and electric propulsion. We also made important efforts to develop more environmentally friendly lubricants, formulated with renewable raw materials and recycled ingredients, reducing consumption of virgin ingredients, with an important reduction in the environmental impact of these products throughout their lifecycle.

Regarding fuel research and development, at Repsol we always select fuel additives to keep pace with the latest in environmentally friendly trends, such as our Diesel e+ and Diesel e+10 products. These packages of additives are specially formulated to match the percentage of biodiesel included in current specifications.

Moreover, as of 2010 airline operators with destination or origin in the EU are required to reduce their CO2 emissions to a target value of 50% by 2050. The use of Biojet as an aviation fuel is one tool for achieving this target. We researched the viability of producing Biojet through co- processing in vegetable oil and mineral kerosene refining, changing the catalytic process of a conventional mineral kerosene unit. As a result, we obtained a product comparable to the conventional fossil-based aviation fuel Jet A-1.

Furthermore, we continue to make progress in our commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions at our facilities, and especially gas flaring. In 2011, we avoided 622,300 tons of CO2e thanks to reduction activities verified under ISO 14064-1 or under the CDM scheme, and over 240,000 correspond to emissions reduced by projects where we did not burn waste gases in flares:

  • The project implemented in the La Plata refinery (Argentina) was registered under the Clean Development Mechanism in December 2010
  • Another similar action undertaken at the Lujn de Cuyo Refinery (Argentina) is currently undergoing CDM registration at the United Nations and was verified under the ISO 14064-1 international standard for greenhouse gas measurement in 2011
  • Our project for the recovery and optimum use of waste gas in the Block 16 production field (Ecuador) was also verified under the ISO 14064-1 international standard.

Green flight

Iberia and Repsol carried out the first Spanish flight powered by biofuel on October 3, 2011. The route selected was the Madrid - Barcelona shuttle service and the airplane an Airbus A320 belonging to Iberia. During the flight 2,600 kilos of biofuel were consumed, producing a savings of around 1,500 kilos of CO2 emissions.

The fuel used in the test flight was a mixture of conventional kerosene (75%) and synthetic paraffin biokerosene (25%) obtained from camelina oil.

On July 1, 2011, international regulations were approved to allow the use of mixtures of conventional and synthetic kerosene (produced from esters and fatty acids) up to a maximum volume of 50%, allowing its use in regular or commercial flights with passengers and not solely demonstration.

New channels for reducing emissions

Carbon capture and storage (CCS) consists of capturing CO2 from an emissions source and compressing it, transporting it, and injecting it into underground rock formations to achieve effective long-term confinement. CCS is seen by several expert bodies (EIA-US Energy Information Administration, European Union, among others) as one of the mechanisms that, along with energy efficiency, renewable and nuclear energies and biofuels, will help enable us to stabilize the concentration of atmospheric CO2 in the long term. Use of these technologies is particularly important for Repsol, given the high percentage of our energy production coming from hydrocarbons.

Repsol will focus our actions on CCS projects that are financially viable and strengthen our social license to operate. We will also intensify our R&D programs aimed at transforming CO2 to value-added products in order to convert it from waste into a resource.

Repsol leads the CO2FUNNELS project, a demonstration project aimed at capturing CO2 from industrial processes for use in the carbonic fertilization of energy crops, thus obtaining biomass that may in turn be used to produce energy. This project is carried out on a 3,000 square meter2 plot in the Puertollano Industrial Complex. Five 400m funnel-type greenhouses have been installed with drip irrigation systems, CO2 dosing pipes, sensors to monitor temperature, humidity and CO2 concentration and equipment to measure flows of CO2 in air and soil.