This week in Berlin, the “National Diesel Forum” was convened at the invitation of the Ministry of Transport and the Environment. Several advocates for natural gas fueled transportation raised their voices, including Dr. Timm Kehler, CEO of zukunft ERDGAS: “In all the discussions about diesel, we must not forget that we have an environmentally friendly, immediately usable engine with natural gas. This potential must not be left unused,” he urged.
Kehler points out that despite a threatened diesel ban, dust-laden air in large cities, and pollutant limits being exceeded, the debate about the diesel engine continues. “The policy holds on to the diesel, although ERDGAS is immediately available as an environmentally friendly alternative,” commented Kehler. “Natural gas vehicles are emitting 23 percent less CO2 , 50 percent less dust and virtually no nitrogen oxides compared to diesel cars with the latest exhaust gas standards.”
In contrast to diesel, the environmental benefits do not only exist on paper, but are regularly proven in real-test tests by independent testing institutes. Driving with natural gas is also interesting because of its renewable component in the form of biomethane or synthetic methane, which allows for almost climatic-neutral mobility.
The increased use of CNG (compressed natural gas) vehicles could therefore contribute to an immediate reduction of the pollutant load. “Finally, the real pollutant emissions must be the focus. We do not need any fuel cosmetics that looks clean only on paper,” is Kehler’s appeal. The policy must create incentives to establish alternative fuels in the market. “Anyone who switches from their dirty diesel to a clean natural gas vehicle should be rewarded and received an exchange premium of 4,000 euros (USD 4,700),” Kehler suggests.
As an affordable fuel able to be used by a wide and large range of vehicles, natural gas is the clean and inexpensive alternative to the problem-afflicted diesel. CNG is available at around 900 petrol stations across Germany, and tax is reduced.
According to Vest Marketing GmbH, there is currently available in Germany 22 models of passenger car to choose from and 11 models in the commercial vehicle sector, not including heavy trucks and buses. That is a lot of choice for drivers and potential adopters of natural gas vehicles (NGVs).
Source: zukunft ERDGAS