Lubricants & Energy | Business Case

Accelerating progress in developing environmentally friendly hydraulic fluids

IMCD Lubricants & Energy is a committed partner for our principal suppliers in promoting and demonstrating the sustainable value of products used in lubricant formulations. By keeping the customer at the centre of our activities, we want to make it easier for them to access ingredients that have a low environmental impact, can boost energy saving and limit CO2 emissions. Our team of experts have defined a set of sustainable categories that enable us to identify and select sustainable materials that are currently available through our distribution partnership.


By using this approach, we can deliver success for our customers. One such case is with an Italian producer of plant-based raw materials and lubricants. The customer was working with an end user of hydraulic systems who was looking to replace their standard hydraulic fluid with an alternative that delivered a lower environmental impact.

Hydraulic fluids are used in machines and equipment to transfer pressure from one point to another. They are largely used in tractors and other farm equipment or construction equipment in close contact with environment, so there is a relatively high risk that they can accidentally leak and be spilled on to soil. Moreover, users can be exposed when fluids spill or leak on the skin during fluid refilling. Hence, there is a growing need from the end user for a hydraulic fluid with a high biodegradability, less flammability and low toxicity.

“Our team is proud to have supported our customer on their journey to developing a hydraulic fluid with improved environmental credentials.”

Emma Guthrie

Communications Manager

The customer was attracted by a premium ashless additive package, offered to the market by IMCD. This package is used for blending high-performance bio-hydraulic fluids and is included on the LuSC list* of eco-friendly additives thanks to its low toxicity profile. Products on the LuSC list can in turn be used for blending Environmentally Acceptable Lubricants (EAL).

Our customer carried out detailed laboratory work to adapt the finished fluid formula to the specific end-user application. As a result, our customer was able to develop a high-performing lubricant with a good level of biodegradability (> 60% ready biodegradability) and a high content of renewable material (> 50%), thus meeting the end user’s requirements for a hydraulic fluid with improved environmental and toxicological credentials.

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