Introduction

The United States consumes more oil than any other country in the world. According to the Geographic Information Systems Laboratory [1], the United States oil consumption exceeds 20 million barrels per day, which represents more than 25% of the world's total consumption. Despite predictions that the United States will exhaust its supply of oil in as little as 40 years, the demand for oil is predicted to continue to increase over the next several decades. In the United States, 54% of the oil is consumed as automotive lubricants (engine oils and transmission fluids) and 44% of the oil is consumed as industrial lubricants (hydraulic fluids and gear oils) [2, 3]. Nearly all lubricants used in the automotive and manufacturing sectors are oil or grease based. These products are not typically environmentally friendly or biodegradable and can introduce significant quantities of pollutants into the waste stream. The long-term impacts that these lubricants have are cumulative and are ultimately detrimental to humans, plants, fish, and wildlife. Due to their potential negative impacts, the Environmental Protection Agency and other government agencies have imposed increasingly stringent regulations on the use, containment, and disposal of oil and grease-based lubricants. These regulations have changed the landscape of the lubrication marketplace over the last decade as new lubricants need to be developed to address a combination of environmental, health, economic, and performance challenges. Since the disposal costs of traditional lubricants are also increasing exponentially, it has become essential to develop and implement lubricants that come from natural resources.

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable energy is energy that is generated from sunlight, rain, tides, geothermal heat and wind. These sources are naturally and constantly replenished, which is why they are deemed as renewable. The usage of renewable energy sources is very important when considering the sustainability of the existing energy usage of the world. While there is currently an abundance of non-renewable energy sources, such as nuclear fuels, these energy sources are depleting. In addition to being a non-renewable supply, the non-renewable energy sources release emissions into the air, which has an adverse effect on the environment.

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