The United Kingdom’s All Party Parliamentary Group on Peak Oil and Gas (APPGOPO) was recently brought up to date on how the use of compressed natural gas (CNG) for transportation fuel can reduce oil dependence in UK heavy goods transport whilst delivering 30% reduction in CO2 emissions, by CNG Services Ltd Managing Director, John Baldwin.
The model put forward is for the UK to develop a network of 50 CNG stations supplied with gas from the high pressure local transmission system (LTS) with easy access for vehicles along haulage routes, for example close to motorway junctions. Each station would cost around £3 million (USD 4.75 million) for 4 compressors at each site, providing CNG to around 1,000 trucks per day so the network could fill a total of 50,000 trucks per day. This equates to a total CNG use of 1 billion kg per annum which is a saving of 3 million litres per day of diesel (60 litres per day, per truck) or 1 billion litres of diesel per annum. The saving in oil imports is estimated at £600 million (USD 950 million) per year, with UK haulers also benefiting from this fuel compared to foreign hauliers who bring lower cost diesel to UK.
The trucks would run on a blend of diesel and CNG, known as dual-fuel. This retains the efficiency of the diesel engine but by displacing diesel molecules with methane, gives around 15% reduction in CO2.
Using the LTS offers significant CO2 benefits due to 80% less electricity needed for compression, no need to dry the gas and because there is no methane leakage. This gives a total CO2 reduction from dual-fuel trucks supplied via LTS in the range 25 – 40%. If the gas was sourced in the UK, for example from shale gas reserves, the CO2 savings would be even greater, compared to imported oil and gas.
Cuadrilla, an independent UK energy company, estimates their reserves to be about 200 tcf. UK gas consumption is around 90 bcm so if 20% of the reserves are recoverable, this would meet domestic consumer demand for around 25 years. Baldwin says this gas is worth around £350 billion (USD 554 billion) of imported gas from abroad which could instead be invested into the renewables sector.
“Political engagement is key to developing this sector with more support for UK manufacturers of dual-fuel trucks who are world leaders in this technology. The request is for the Government to create a CNG-diesel fuel duty differential that is fixed for 10 years in order for the market to fund the investment in the CNG stations and the trucks,” said Baldwin.
The presentation is available for downloading – click here.
(This article compiled using information from a CNG Services Ltd press release)