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NGVAmerica News Week in Review: December 14, 2015


  • Senators Introduce the Waterway LNG Parity Act of 2015
  • NGVAmerica Prepares New Listing of Aftermarket Conversion Systems
  • Ford Rolls out First CNG Ready 2016 F-150 Pickup in Kansas City
  • AGA Systems Earns U.S. EPA Certificate for 2016 GM Models
  • Alkane Truck Introduces an Alternative Fueled Humvee Vehicle
  • Canadian Mining Operation Implements LNG Pilot Program
  • Westport and GTI Awarded $900,000 for Natural Gas Combustion Technology
  • PA DEP Offers Rebates for Alternative Fuel Vehicles
  • Mainstay Delivers CNG Fuel Systems to Support American Honda Operations
  • BioCNG Facility to Support Progressive Waste CNG Fleet in Louisiana
  • Hexagon Composites to Supply CNG Fuel Tanks to European Vehicle Modifier
  • Shell to Build Innovative Bunker Vessel to Deliver LNG Fuel
  • Wärtsilä Develops Inert Gas Solution for 17 New LNG Carriers


Senators Introduce the Waterway LNG Parity Act of 2015

December 14, 2015

U.S. Senators Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) introduced the Waterway LNG Parity Act of 2015 that would ensure that excise taxes on LNG for marine transportation on the inland waterways are levied at a rate consistent with their energy output relative to diesel and gasoline, respectively.

“This common-sense legislation would remove another barrier to the greater utilization of clean-burning, low-cost domestic natural gas in the transportation sector by leveling the playing field for the taxation of LNG fuel used in marine vessels operating on inland waterways in the U.S.,” said NGVAmerica President Matt Godlewski

The current financing mechanism for the inland waterways system puts the use of LNG—which is a cleaner, cheaper, and domestic fuel—at a disadvantage. This legislation would change the inland waterways financing rate to provide equal treatment within the federal tax code.

“It takes about 1.7 gallons of LNG to provide the same amount of energy as a gallon of diesel. Those who use LNG to power marine vessels would have to pay 50 cents in tax for the same amount of energy contained in a gallon of diesel fuel that is only taxed at 29 cents—that doesn’t make sense,” said Dr. Cassidy.

“Providing parity to LNG for marine transportation—just as we recently did for cars and trucks—creates an opportunity to grow this market and encourages the use of domestically produced natural gas as a cleaner burning transportation fuel,” Bennet said.


NGVAmerica Prepares New Listing of Aftermarket Conversion Systems

December 14, 2015

NGVAmerica recently released an update of its listing of available natural gas aftermarket conversion systems.  The extensive listing includes equipment that has been certified or approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or California Air Resources Board (CARB).  All aftermarket conversion systems intended for use on on-road motor vehicles must be certified or approved by EPA or California authorities in order to be legal.  Information is organized by original equipment manufacturer (e.g., Chrysler, Ford, or GM), then by model year, engine size, and conversion manufacturer. The information includes a detailed list of chassis certified light and medium duty vehicles as well as a separate listing of heavy duty engine offerings.  NGVAmerica compiles the information by reviewing data published by the EPA and Executive Orders released by CARB.  To view the listings, visit he NGVAmerica website here.


Ford Rolls out First CNG Ready 2016 F-150 Pickup in Kansas City

December 09, 2015

Ford has produced the first 2016 Ford F-150 with the ability to run on CNG at its assembly line in Kansas City, Missouri. The 2016 Ford F-150 with 5.0L Ti-VCT V8 engine is available with a factory-installed, gaseous-fuel prep package that includes hardened valves, valve seats, pistons and piston rings so it can operate on natural gas or propane, as well as gasoline through separate fuel systems.

“It’s exciting to see the first F-150s with the CNG/propane-prepped 5.0-liter V8 headed to customers,” said Jon Coleman, Ford fleet sustainability and technology manager. “Whether running on gasoline, gaseous fuel or both, the 5.0-liter V8 F-150 offers hardworking customers terrific towing and payload and now, the ability to operate on alternative fuel.”

When equipped with a bi-fuel CNG engine package, the 5.0-liter V8 F-150 is capable of achieving more than 750 miles on combined tanks of gasoline and CNG, depending on tank size. The Ford F-150 with 5.0-liter V8 has an EPA-estimated rating of 22 mpg on the highway and 18 mpg combined.

Green Car Journal recently named the 2016 F-150 its 2016 Green Truck of the Year, in part due to the availability of the gaseous-fuel prep option. The gaseous fuel engine prep from the factory costs $315 before the customer chooses a Ford Qualified Vehicle Modifier (QVM) to supply fuel tanks, fuel lines and fuel injectors. Upfits run approximately $6,000 to $9,500, depending on fuel tank capacity.


AGA Systems Earns U.S. EPA Certificate for 2016 GM Models

December 12, 2015

AGA Systems recently announced it received U.S. EPA certification of its EcoSync DI Bi-fuel/CNG fuel system for the 2016 General Motors EcoTec3 engine that is used in the Chevy/GM 1500 truck series and GM/Chevy/Cadillac SUV’s. AGA Systems also received EPA Certification of its DuraDrive CX Bi-fuel/CNG fuel system for the 2016 General Motors 2.4L EcoTec LAF engine that is used in the Chevy Equinox and GMC Terrain.

The EcoSync DI system uses AGA Systems revolutionary EcoSync technology that is the only true bi-fuel control technology currently available in the market for the EcoTec3 engine platform and uses the factory electronic control module for CNG operation.


Alkane Truck Introduces an Alternative Fueled Humvee Vehicle

December 10, 2015

Alkane Truck Company recently completed Department of Transportation compliance with their Class-7 Cab Over truck and have announced plans to manufacture a Humvee-type vehicle they have branded The Alkane Dominator. The first Alkane Dominators off the assembly line will be powered by propane, but will be available with an optional CNG fuel system.

Alkane has emerged as a leader in the development of alternative powered trucks and brings to the market a unique production and distribution model. Like their Class 7 Cab Over, the Alkane Dominator uses outsourced components and existing dealerships for distribution.

The Alkane Dominator has a 12,800 GVW, 4-wheel drive and Allison automatic transmission. It has a high-powered, high-torque V8 engine.


Canadian Mining Operation Implements LNG Pilot Program

December 9, 2015

Teck Resources Limited is piloting the use of  LNG as a fuel source in six haul trucks at its Fording River steelmaking coal operation in southeast B.C., which is the first use of LNG as a haul truck fuel at a Canadian mine site.

The dual-fuel LNG haul trucks has the potential to provide significant environmental benefits and cost savings. LNG produces virtually no particulate or sulphur dioxide emissions and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. There is the potential to potentially reduce fuel costs by more than $20 million annually by adopting LNG and diesel hybrid fuel across the operations. FortisBC is transporting and supplying LNG to the mine site and is making a financial contribution towards the pilot.

The pilot is one of the steps Teck is taking to achieve its long-term target to reduce annual GHG emissions by 450,000 tons at its operations by 2030. To date, Teck has reduced annual emissions by 170,000 tons as the result of initiatives implemented since 2011.

“LNG is a fuel source that has the potential to lower costs, significantly reduce emissions and improve environmental performance at our operations,” said Don Lindsay, President & CEO, Teck. “We are committed to minimizing our own carbon footprint while at the same time continuing to provide the mining products that are essential to building a modern, low-carbon society.”

Teck, with support from FortisBC, has upgraded the Fording River Operations truck maintenance shop, provided engine conversion kits, installed fueling facilities, and implemented a comprehensive safety program in advance of the pilot.

The pilot is expected to run until mid-year 2016 and will provide more information about the potential of using LNG more broadly across Teck’s haul truck fleet, creating the opportunity for further fleet conversions to LNG in the future.


Westport and GTI Awarded $900,000 for Natural Gas Combustion Technology

December 9, 2015

Westport Innovations, together with the Gas Technology Institute (GTI), has been awarded $900,000 towards a program to advance natural gas combustion technology. The work will feature Westport’s enhanced spark ignited (ESI) natural gas engine technology and demonstrate “High Frequency Corona Discharge Ignition” on an OEM partner’s engine. The engine has a displacement of between 1 and 1.5 liters per cylinder and is targeted at medium duty commercial vehicle applications.

“Westport ESI technology allows, for the first time, a spark-ignited natural gas engine to exceed the performance of a comparable state-of-the-art diesel engine,” said Brad Douville, Vice President Business Development for Westport. “Next generation natural gas engines of this class will be smaller, lighter, lower cost and have even higher performance than modern diesel engines because we can exploit the advantages of natural gas as a high performance fuel with naturally lower emissions challenges.”

Of the total program funding, $750,000 is coming from the California Energy Commission (CEC) and $150,000 is being provided by the Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas). Westport will contribute approximately $250,000 in additional funds for a total of $1.15 million. Westport expects that, if this program is successful, Westport ESI systems integrating corona discharge technology could become commercially available in as soon as four years.

“The CEC is committed to supporting the development of advanced transportation technologies that use alternative or renewable fuel sources,” said Energy Commission Chair Robert Weisenmiller. “These solutions are essential components of the state’s strategy to address local air quality issues and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”


PA DEP Offers Rebates for Alternative Fuel Vehicles

December 11, 2015

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is offering rebates to Pennsylvania residents to assist with the cost of purchasing an alternative fuel vehicle, including natural gas vehicles.

“Alternative fuel vehicles are good for the climate and are a part of building a sustainable Pennsylvania,” DEP Secretary John Quigley said. “We encourage everyone to consider these renewable and clean technologies.”

These rebates are funded by the Alternative Fuels Incentive Grant Program, which is supported by a gross receipts tax on utilities. To qualify, the vehicle must be registered in Pennsylvania, operated primarily in-state, and be purchased no more than six months before the rebate application is submitted.

Rebates of $1,000 are being offered for natural gas, propane, hydrogen or fuel-cell vehicles. CNG original equipment, manufacturer retrofits, or certified conversions to CNG are also eligible for the $1,000 rebate.

For more information on the types of eligible vehicles and to apply for a rebate, click here.


Mainstay Delivers CNG Fuel Systems to Support American Honda Operations

December 8, 2015

Mainstay Fuel Technologies and Virginia Transportation Corporation have completed and delivered thirty custom designed fuel systems for use in Virginia Transportation’s new fleet of CNG powered car haulers. The CNG-powered fleet will be used as part of a collaboration between Virginia Transportation and American Honda Motor Co. in Alabama. These environmentally friendly trucks will be dedicated to routes moving automobiles from Honda’s Lincoln, Alabama, factory to a new CSX rail facility.

Mainstay and Virginia Transportation worked closely with The Pete Store, Peterbilt, Cottrell and Fontaine Modification on this project to insure the system’s integration with the truck’s unique configuration.  Mainstay engineered the fuel system utilizing a dual side-mounted alignment with two Type IV cylinders to meet the fleet’s range requirements.

Peterbilt lowered the cab and chassis of the 365 Daycab, and Fontaine Modification further reduced the height of the roof and installed Mainstay’s fuel system on the chassis within an envelope required for body installation.  Cottrell completed the truck by adding the carrier body to the chassis.

“This challenging cutting edge project has been a learning experience for all involved,” said Leo Dorie, President and CEO of Virginia Transportation. “Virginia Transportation is honored to be next to Honda in this clean step leading to the future of auto hauling.”


BioCNG Facility to Support Progressive Waste CNG Fleet in Louisiana

December 10, 2015

St. Landry Parish celebrated with an official ribbon cutting to mark the opening of its expanded BioCNG Vehicle Fuel Facility at its Sanitary Landfill, in Louisiana, which is now fueling Progressive Waste Solutions refuse vehicles operating in the area.

The expansion was initiated by a fuel purchase agreement between the St. Landry Solid Waste Commission and Progressive Waste Solutions. Progressive Waste purchased 10 new CNG powered collection trucks at the beginning of the year to provide garbage collecting services to parish residents. The trucks will run on the RNG generated at the landfill, instead of using an alternative source.

“This is one of the only facilities where with a tube trailer we can compress the gas at the landfill and haul it to the recycling center for the (Progressive) trucks to use,” said Steve Wittmann with BioCNG. “It’s a unique way to get more use of the biogas out into the community and other vehicles.”

The capital cost of the recently completed project was $2.7 million. He said they plan to dispense around 175,000 gallons per year, while receiving $1.50 worth of tax credits from the state Environmental Protection Agency and the Internal Revenue Service per gallon of gas. The district expects to get a return on its investment in 10 years.


Hexagon Composites to Supply CNG Fuel Tanks to European Vehicle Modifier

December 4, 2015

Hexagon Composites’ subsidiary Hexagon Raufoss has been nominated by an international vehicle modifier to supply CNG fuel tanks. The new NGV car model will enter the European market during second half of 2016.

According to the agreement, the first deliveries are targeted for end of second quarter 2016, and the program is scheduled to run for up to seven years. The estimated overall delivery value is around $18 million.

“The nomination will further strengthen our cooperation with NGV modifiers in Europe,” said Ragnar Holthe, Managing Director of Hexagon Raufoss. “We experience that the increased global focus on emissions drives the demand for compressed natural gas and other alternative fuels by choosing vehicle storage technology that reduces emissions and fuel costs.”


Shell to Build Innovative Bunker Vessel to Deliver LNG Fuel

December 4, 2015

Shell confirmed its plans to build a specialized LNG bunker vessel to deliver to LNG-fueled vessels in northwest Europe. The new vessel will be based at the port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands, and will load from the new LNG break bulk terminal and jetty to be constructed by the Gas Access to Europe (Gate) terminal. It will also be sea-going and will be able to bunker customers at other locations.

The vessel will be built by STX Offshore & Shipbuilding and will have a capacity to carry 230,000 cu. ft. of LNG fuel. Featuring a transfer system and sub cooler unit, it will be able to load from big or small terminals and able to bunker a wide variety of customer vessels.

Shell has committed to buy capacity from the Gate terminal, which has enabled this investment in the terminal expansion. The new LNG for transport infrastructure, called a ‘break bulk’ terminal, includes the construction of a new jetty. The new jetty will increase availability of LNG as a transport fuel for vessels and trucks in northwest Europe.

The new, dedicated break bulk terminal is expected to be operational in the fourth quarter of 2016. It will be positioned alongside the central Gate terminal, where LNG currently arrives via large chartered carriers from around the world.

For road customers, the existing truck-loading station at the Gate terminal will be used to distribute LNG fuel to an initial Shell network of up to seven LNG truck refueling stations in the Netherlands. The first of these Shell truck refueling stations is planned to open in the Rotterdam area.


Wärtsilä Develops Inert Gas Solution for 17 New LNG Carriers

December 11, 2015

Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME) in South Korea has contracted Wärtsilä to supply combined inert gas generators and gas combustion units for 17 new LNG Carrier vessels under construction at the company’s yards.

These will be the first ever units delivered by Wärtsilä that combine inert gas generators (IGG) and gas combustion units (GCU) with high capacity. The system uses an existing Wärtsilä Moss inert gas generator to burn the boil-off gas, thereby eliminating the need for a conventional gas combustion unit. This results in considerable capital expenditure savings, and at the same time, by using the boil-off gas as fuel for creating inert gas, the combined system also provides notable operating cost savings.

The combined IGG-GCU system has a minimal environmental footprint that is achieved through the replacement of a separate onboard system, and by using the boil-off gas for inert gas generation, which together minimize the extra use of marine diesel oil (MDO) fuel.

Wärtsilä has earlier supplied smaller versions of the combined IGG-GCU system since its introduction in 2013. These new Wärtsilä contracts are scheduled to be delivered commencing in the third quarter of 2016.