On August 1, 2012, The National Petroleum Council (NPC) in approving its report, Advancing Technology for America’s Transportation Future, also approved the making available of certain materials used in the study process, including detailed, specific subject matter papers prepared or used by the study’s Task Groups and/or Subgroups. NPC has kindly agreed that one of those reports: Topic Paper #22 — Renewable Natural Gas for Transportation: An Overview of the Feedstock Capacity, Economics, and GHG Emission Reduction Benefits of RNG as a Low-Carbon Fuel — also be made available from the IANGV Knowledgebase website. Read more »
In the U.S.A., the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) has jurisdiction concerning vehicle safety It requires that all CNG fuel storage cylinders have a label that (1) states the date of manufacture and the date that the cylinder is required to be removed from service (typically 15-20 years), and (2) instructs the vehicle owner/operator to have a qualified visual inspection of the tank every 36,000 miles or every 3 years (whichever occurs first) and/or after an accident or fire. Converters and vehicle owners should have documentation that this safety inspection has been done. Inspections are performed to look for tank and bracket damage (e.g., gouges, cuts, abrasions, dents, corrosion, rust, general wear, etc.). Qualified cylinder inspectors are located throughout the US and Canada. The cost/time associated with a cylinder inspection is minimal.
Commencing 1st August 2012, the European Commission Intelligent Energy Initiative (IEE) implemented up a three-year Clean Fleets project, providing forms of assistance to vehicle procurers in Europe to meet obligations under EC Clean Vehicles Directive (CVD) , which has now been integrated into national law in all EU Member States. The directive — 2009/33/EC — presently supports three main alternative types of fuels and propulsion technologies which are being developed within the time horizon of 2020. Natural gas and biomethane fuels are included. The Clean Fleets project is set to conclude in September 2015. Read more »
The U.S. Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Agency, part of the federal Department of Energy, has introduced a Petroleum Reduction Planning Tool to help vehicle fleet operators reduce petroleum consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Owners and Operators can create a comprehensive plan for their fleet by using several savings methods. The tool caters for multiple vehicle types.
Available here: afdc.energy.gov/prep/
In the December 2012 issue of Energy World (published by Energy Institute), John Baldwin, MD of CNG Services in the United Kingdom, expressed his thoughts about the future of natural gas in the UK, from which the following has been largely drawn.
Gas demand in the UK has been primarily met by indigenous gas production from the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) but, in recent years, UKCS production has been declining and imports have been rising to meet demand. The demand for gas energy is likely to increase as other solutions will not have sufficient generation capacity. “Therefore, electricity will be generated by a small amount of nuclear, perhaps some coal with carbon capture and storage (CCS) and wind energy, with gas as the predominant supply.” Baldwin says gas alone has the capacity to meet demand on a windless day.
Biogas from anaerobic digestion makes a contribution but is limited in supply to around 10% of domestic customer gas demand.
In the face of transport-generated greenhouse gas emissions (20% of total UK emissions), the government supports the introduction of electric vehicles (EVs), but the shortfall in renewable energy generation means “it is likely that EVs will be adding to carbon dioxide emissions compared to petrol hybrid or low emission diesel cars.” Read more »
The Baltic Biogas project commenced in 2009 and ended 2012. The outcomes and recommendations of the project about how to start using biogas as transport fuel are recorded on the project website at balticbiogasbus.eu/web/. Lennart Hallgren, Project Manager, concludes that biogas buses are the best choice for urban public transport to lower emissions of green house gases and improve inner city air quality while creating energy autonomy and more sustainable jobs. Biogas will also significantly contribute to reaching the EU 2020 targets. Read more »
A New York-based energy research organization has published a report: Renewable Natural Gas (RNG): The Solution to a Major Transportation Challenge — that states use of renewable natural gas as a vehicle fuel is a technologically viable alternative to relying exclusively on petroleum-based fuels for transportation. The new publication was prepared by Energy Vision, a New York-based energy research organization, and CALSTART, a California-based leader in clean transportation technologies. It details the many benefits of converting organic wastes into clean vehicle fuel. Read more »
One of the largest obstacles to widespread take-up of LNG as fuel is the lack of a bunkering infrastructure. Lloyd’s Register (LR) has been researching the issues around a bunker network and infrastructure for the shipping industry and initiated a study examining trade patterns and existing bunker trends by ship type and size; examining the fuel consumption requirements; assessing the potential availability of LNG worldwide; and surveying the key stakeholder groups of shipowners and ports to understand their needs. Read the findings here.
The Global Methane Initiative (GMI)’s new International Best Practices Guide for Landfill Gas Energy (LFGE) Projects provides a broad overview of the development process for LFGE projects and presents the technological, economic and political considerations that typically affect the success of LFGE projects in international settings. The guide presents best practices that encourage environmentally and economically sound LFGE projects and connects stakeholders with available information, tools and services. It is intended for representatives of national, regional, and local governments; landfill owners; energy service providers; corporations and industries; and representatives of not-for-profit organizations. Read more »
Natural Gas as a Transportation Fuel: Models for Developing Fueling Infrastructure was prepared by American Gas Foundation. It was written to enable local distribution companies (LDCs), and other stakeholders, to better understand the commercial and regulatory considerations involved in entering the NGV refueling market. The study outlines a variety of models that may be employed; recognizing that approaches to this market will vary based on the needs and policy goals of individual regulated service territories. Attention is given to past practices, innovative approaches, and the current and near-term environment that recognizes the important role LDCs will play in establishing natural gas as a mainstream transportation fuel.
AGF Transportation Study 2012 (pdf file)