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What Is the Diesel Industry?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 27 August 2016
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The diesel industry is a subset of the energy industry that is focused on the production and use of diesel fuels, including fossil fuels and biofuels. Many nations host companies that are active in this industry, along with allied companies such as producers of heavy equipment. Diesel pricing and demand fluctuate, and the latest information can be found in trade publications and financial magazines that cover the energy industry.

One aspect of the diesel industry involves the production of diesel from raw materials. Feedstock might include corn, soy and other biological sources, along with crude oil. Production facilities can vary in size and scope and require a substantial support crew, including engineers, technicians and other personnel. After diesel fuel is made, it must be transported to an end consumer, usually through a wholesaler who distributes the fuel to gas stations or tanks at facilities maintained by large customers.

Diesel is used in power generation, refrigeration, cars, trucks and marine applications. Heavy equipment, such as the kind used on construction sites, is often diesel-powered, and diesel also is a popular fuel for large trucks, particularly those that need to pull heavy loads. Some passenger cars also run on diesel. The diesel industry includes allied professions such as car and truck manufacturers, engine developers and power companies that use diesel for backup power generation. Sellers, transporters and distributors also play a very active role in the industry.

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One area of growth in the diesel industry at the start of the 21st century was in ecologically friendly fuels. This area includes a variety of biofuels, along with products such as conversion kits to allow regular diesel engines to use biofuels for their energy. Diesel conversion generally is less expensive than conversion from regular gasoline. Some traditional firms have met the demand for green energy by branching out and retrofitting their production facilities to make it possible to produce biofuels.

Diesel industry forecasts are published on a regular basis in trade publications and financial magazines. Big news in the industry might also make its way into the mass media. Energy prices on both regular gasoline and diesel tend to be a topic of general interest and sometimes are considered economic indicators. The health of this industry is often a topic of interest, because it can affect the costs of food and other commodities. High diesel prices make it more expensive to produce goods and especially to transport them, and this cost usually is passed on to consumers in the form of higher prices for those goods.

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