Taking too long? Close loading screen.
Skip to content

NGVAmerica News Week in Review: June 22, 2015

NGVAmerica News Week in Review: June 22, 2015

  • EPA and NHTSA Propose Heavy Duty GHG and FE Regulations
  • Nominations for 23rd NGV Achievement Awards Due in One Month!
  • Space Filling Up for Inside Track: Meet the Vendors! at Denver Conference
  • Honda Discontinues Civic Natural Gas Model
  • EPA Releases Assessment of Hydraulic Fracturing’s Impact on Drinking Water
  • Chicago Launches $1 Million Alternative Fuel Taxi Program
  • A-1 Alternative Fuel Systems Packages Extended Range System
  • Trillium CNG to Build Second CNG Station for Los Angeles Schools
  • Groundbreaking Held for First of Five Stations for C.A.T.
  • GAIN Secures $500,000 Grant to Build CNG Station in Maryland
  • Galileo Secures Canadian Distributor for Cryobox Technology
  • Quantum Reveals High-Pressure Tank for Virtual Pipeline Applications
  • Carnival Signs Contract for Industry’s First LNG-Powered Cruise Ships


EPA and NHTSA Propose Heavy Duty GHG and FE Regulations

June 22, 2015

On Friday, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued proposed regulations addressing greenhouse gas (GHG) and fuel efficiency requirements for new heavy-duty vehicles.  The rules take effect starting in 2018 for trailers and 2021 for engines and trucks and phase-in over a ten year period.  The Phase 2 rulemaking (Phase 1 rules were finalized in 2011) includes requirements for engines, trailers, and complete trucks and set different levels of stringency for different categories of vehicles (e.g., large pickup trucks, vocational vehicles, transit buses, tractor trailers).

A fact sheet released by the agencies indicates that the new rules will “cut GHG emissions by approximately 1 billion metric tons, conserve approximately 1.8 billion barrels of oil, and lower fuel costs by about $170 billion over the lifetime of the vehicles sold under the program.”

NGVAmerica released a press release on Friday commending the agencies for the proposal and for the collaborative process that EPA has undertaken leading up to development of the rules. NGVAmerica and its members support the objectives of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and reducing reliance on petroleum.  We also appreciate the manner in which the agencies appear to have given careful consideration to issues affecting natural gas vehicles.  Furthermore, we recognize the importance of continuing to achieve additional reductions in greenhouse gas and criteria pollutants as part of a comprehensive effort to address climate change and improve public health.

In 2027 when the standard is fully phased in, heavy-duty vehicles across all classes would achieve up to the following CO2 emissions:

  • 24 percent for combination tractors designed to pull trailers and move freight when compared to Phase 1 standards;
  • 8 percent for trailers when compared to an average model year 2017 trailer;
  • 16 percent for vocational vehicles when compared to Phase 1 standards; and
  • 16 percent for pick-up trucks and light vans when compared to Phase 1 standards.

The notice also indicates that new engines will need to achieve a 4 percent improvement in fuel efficiency.

NGVAmerica has begun the process of reviewing the 1,300 plus page notice released by the agencies. There are a number of issues that NGVAmerica will be reviewing with members to ascertain their impact. With the input of members, we will submit detailed comments on the proposal. EPA plans to provide a 60-day comment period that will run from the date of publication in the Federal Register. It could be several weeks before this notice appears in the Federal Register, so comments are likely to be due in late August or September. The agencies also plan to hold hearings sometime in the next several months.

The proposed regulation and other materials related to this rulemaking are available here. For more information, contact Jeff Clarke at 202.824.7364 or jclarke@www.ngvamerica.org.


Nominations for 23rd NGV Achievement Awards Due in One Month!

June 22, 2015

The nomination deadline is just one month away for the 23rd Annual NGV Achievement Awards, which will be presented at the 2015 North American NGV Conference & Expo in Denver, Colorado, Tuesday, September 15. The awards recognize individuals and organizations for their outstanding contributions to the advancement of natural gas as a vehicular fuel.  They are awarded to stakeholders from all segments: industry equipment and service suppliers, policymakers, customers and clean air/clean transportation advocate-allies.

Only NGVAmerica members may make nominations; although, nominees are not required to be NGVAmerica members. When nominating a person, please consider that most individual awards fall under “Lifetime Achievement,” which is an award rarely presented; often, the company or organization is a more suitable nomination than one or more individuals. Please reference past recipients by following the link below to serve as examples of notable award winners.

Deadline: Nominations are due Friday, July 17.  For further details and to download nomination paperwork, visit the NGVAmerica website here.


Space Filling Up for Inside Track: Meet the Vendors! at Denver Conference

June 22, 2015

Space is filling up for Inside Track: Meet the Vendors! at the upcoming 2015 North America NGV Conference & Exposition in Denver on Tuesday, September 15 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. Inside Track: Meet the Vendors! is a repackaged version of the popular Market Development Peer Exchange (“Peer Exchange”) featured in years past and will provide all conference registrants with a venue to hear rapid fire mini-briefings from NGVAmerica members. The format will allow approximately 20 members about 5 minutes to introduce—with or without PowerPoint presentations—their technologies and services to audience participants. This venue is likened to “speed dating,” serving as a fast-paced compilation of NGV-specific topics of interest with the desired outcome to educate and generate additional opportunities of increased foot traffic to members’ exhibition space on the show floor.

Inside Track: Meet the Vendors! is a first-come, first-served opportunity, and the limited time for this venue dictates that presenters must be exhibiting members. To reserve your time slot, contact Tom Sheehan immediately at 207.925.1136 or tsheehan@ngvamerica.com. A signed exhibition contract is required to receive a chance for this presentation opportunity.


Honda Discontinues Civic Natural Gas Model

June 15, 2015

Honda announced it will discontinue the Civic Natural Gas and hybrid models at the end of the 2015 model year. The Honda Civic GX (Later called the Civic Natural Gas) was first introduced to select markets in the U.S. in 1998, and Honda has promoted the use of CNG-powered vehicles for many years. However, despite this commitment, Honda said consumer demand remains a challenge.

Production was completed in April, and Honda says it has more than 250 vehicles in dealer inventory. Honda will continue to provide maintenance service to Civic Natural Gas owners through their dealer network. Honda says there are nearly 19,000 CNG-powered Civics on the road today.

“The natural gas vehicle market has grown tremendously since the introduction of the Civic Natural Gas more than 15 years ago,” said Matthew Godlewski, NGVAmerica President. “We’ll miss the Civic, but as more businesses increasingly adopt clean-burning natural gas into their medium and heavy-duty fleets, the infrastructure development behind this growth will eventually support the broader expansion of the light-duty market.”


EPA Releases Assessment of Hydraulic Fracturing’s Impact on Drinking Water

June 4, 2015

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released a draft assessment on the potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing activities on drinking water resources in the United States. The assessment, done at the request of Congress, shows that while hydraulic fracturing activities in the U.S. are carried out in a way that have not led to widespread, systemic impacts on drinking water resources, there are potential vulnerabilities in the water lifecycle that could impact drinking water.

“EPA’s draft assessment will give state regulators, tribes and local communities and industry around the country a critical resource to identify how best to protect public health and their drinking water resources,” said Dr. Thomas A. Burke, EPA’s Science Advisor and Deputy Assistant Administrator of EPA’s Office of Research and Development. “It is the most complete compilation of scientific data to date, including over 950 sources of information, published papers, numerous technical reports, information from stakeholders and peer-reviewed EPA scientific reports.”

EPA’s review of data sources available to the agency found specific instances where well integrity and waste water management related to hydraulic fracturing activities impacted drinking water resources, but they were small compared to the large number of hydraulically fractured wells across the country. The report provides valuable information about potential vulnerabilities, some of which are not unique to hydraulic fracturing, to drinking water resources, but was not designed to be a list of documented impacts.

EPA’s draft assessment benefited from extensive stakeholder engagement conducted across the country with states, tribes, industry, non-governmental organizations, the scientific community and the public to ensure that the draft assessment reflects current practices in hydraulic fracturing and utilizes all data and information available to the agency.

The study will be finalized after review by the Science Advisory Board (SAB) and public review and comment.

For a copy of the study, visit www.epa.gov/hfstudy.


Chicago Launches $1 Million Alternative Fuel Taxi Program

June 12, 2015

The City’s Drive Clean Chicago program announced plans to deploy as many as 120 clean vehicles on Chicago’s streets through the new Drive Clean Taxi program. Drive Clean Chicago, an arm of the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT), is partnering with CALSTART, a non-profit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of clean transportation alternatives.

The Drive Clean Taxi program is now accepting applications from vendors who want to participate in the program made possible through a federal clean air grant. Later this year, vendors will offer discounts of up to $10,000 towards each CNG or electric vehicle supplied to taxi, livery or other public passenger fleets. Drive Clean Chicago previously launched the Drive Clean Truck program in 2014.

Drive Clean Taxi is open to taxi cab owners and other public passenger vehicle fleets in good standing with the City’s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP).

Unlike grant or rebate programs, the City’s innovative Drive Clean Taxi voucher program will enable taxi and other public passenger vehicle fleets to purchase or lease cleaner vehicles at a reduced cost at the point of sale. Drive Clean Chicago is funded through the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) Program. Vouchers will cover 80 percent, up to $10,000, of the incremental or conversion costs of CNG and electric vehicles serving in taxi and public passenger vehicle fleets.

Vouchers will be available on a first-come, first-served basis once the City of Chicago and CALSTART have approved a list of eligible vehicles and vendors, which is expected by this summer. Interested vehicle manufacturers, dealerships and conversion system providers are invited to visit Drive Clean Chicago’s website at www.DriveCleanChicago.com for more information on how to participate.


A-1 Alternative Fuel Systems Packages Extended Range System

A-1 Alternative Fuel Systems, an alternative fuel vehicle converter headquartered in Fresno, California, recently built a large 210 DGE back-of-cab assembly on a Peterbilt 348 truck equipped with a Cummins Westport 8.9L ISL G engine for a wastewater pipeline rehabilitator located in Missouri. In addition to powering the truck, this system will power a secondary engine that fuels the body. There are two regulators, one that runs to the truck’s engine and a secondary regulator that will run to the engine powering the body. The package will achieve up to approximately 700—900 miles on a single fill. The package consists of eight Type IV 21 in. x 80 in. tanks. The cabinet was assembled at A-1’s facility in Elkhart, Indiana.


Trillium CNG to Build Second CNG Station for Los Angeles Schools

June 16, 2015

Trillium CNG has been selected to design, build, operate and maintain a CNG fueling station for the largest operator of CNG-fueled school buses in the country, the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). This will be the second CNG fueling station built and operated by Trillium CNG for the California school district.

The new facility, located at the district’s San Julian Garage near downtown Los Angeles, will feature 102 time-fill posts and a single fast-fill dispenser, with CNG dispensed overnight using two 150 horsepower compressors. This site is expected to deliver 500,000 GGE annually. Groundbreaking is scheduled in late July, and Trillium CNG expects the new facility to be built and operating by October 2015. Trillium will maintain the station for the next 15 years.

Trillium CNG currently owns and operates a CNG station that it designed and built for the exclusive use of the LAUSD in January, 2000. The existing station is located at their garage in Gardena, California.


Groundbreaking Held for First of Five Stations for C.A.T.

June 17, 2015

Local officials and community leaders joined with representatives from C.A.T., Gaz Métro and U.S. Venture Gain Fuel Canada to break ground for the first GAIN Clean Fuel CNG station in Québec, Canada. The public access station will provide the North American carrier with natural gas fuel to support its growing fleet of CNG trucks. The station, which is located at the busy A-20/H-401 corridor, will be supplied with natural gas through Gaz Métro’s network. The opening of the station is planned for this fall.

“The carrier industry is evolving with the use of CNG,” said C.A.T. President Daniel Goyette. “Partnering with GAIN Clean Fuel has provided us the infrastructure we need as we continue to convert our fleet from diesel fuel to operating on CNG.”

Nearly a third of C.A.T.’s fleet of 350 tractors will be converted to CNG. This station, along with four additional GAIN Clean Fuel stations under construction (in Toronto, Ontario; Laredo, Texas; Charlotte, North Carolina; and Scranton, Pennsylvania) will be combined with the existing GAIN Clean Fuel North American network to provide C.A.T. access to CNG.


GAIN Secures $500,000 Grant to Build CNG Station in Maryland

June 16, 2015

GAIN Clean Fuel has been awarded the Maryland Natural Gas Refueling Station Grant by the Maryland Energy Administration. The grant proposal was submitted by Leonardo Academy on behalf of GAIN. The grant award, totaling approximately $500,000, will support GAIN Clean Fuel’s construction of a CNG fueling station in Baltimore, Maryland.

GAIN has partnered with Northeast Foods of Baltimore (NEF), a key supplier of buns to McDonald’s restaurants since 1965, to provide two fast-fill dual-hose dispensers near NEF’s Baltimore distribution facility. The station will provide CNG to NEF’s fleet of delivery trucks and will also be open to the public.

Leonardo Academy is working with GAIN Clean Fuel to procure funding in multiple states in order to promote the use of CNG nationwide. Last week, funding for two new GAIN CNG stations in Pennsylvania was announced.


Galileo Secures Canadian Distributor for Cryobox Technology

June 12, 2015

Galileo announced a CNG, LCNG, and LNG equipment distribution agreement with NEE for the complete line of Galileo equipment used in applications ranging from CNG for on and off road vehicles and other applications. NEE designs, sells and services complete fuel delivery systems for use in transportation, marine, rail, and mining and has significant experience with CNG vehicle conversions.

“Our customer base expects NEE to be at the forefront of new technology,” said Tiina McCombie, marketing director of NEE, “so we want to provide innovative solutions for whatever their choice in energy fuels may be.”


Quantum Reveals High-Pressure Tank for Virtual Pipeline Applications

June 15, 2015

Quantum Fuel Systems announced it has developed a 5,000 psi tank for the emerging CNG virtual pipeline market and has shipped the first 100 units to a foreign-based customer.  The tank was developed in connection with the customer’s arrangement with an industrial firm to transport CNG in bulk quantities to locations where natural gas pipeline infrastructure is nonexistent. The 640 liter tank was designed to maximize the transport density of natural gas at 5,000 psi, compared to traditional 3,600 psi CNG storage.

Mr. Brian Olson, President and CEO of Quantum, noted that there are approximately 6,200 trillion cubic feet of stranded natural gas estimated around the world that could be brought to market with virtual pipeline systems.


Carnival Signs Contract for Industry’s First LNG-Powered Cruise Ships

June 15, 2015

Carnival announced it has signed a multi-billion dollar contract with Meyer Werft to build four megaships with a total capacity of 6,600 guests that will be powered by LNG. The company said two of the ships will be manufactured for AIDA Cruises at Meyer Werft’s shipyard in Papenburg, Germany. Carnival did not say where the other two ships, which will be built at Meyer Werft’s shipyard in Turku, Finland, will be put into service.

The four new ships will be the first in the cruise industry to use LNG in dual-powered hybrid engines to power the ship both in port and on the open sea. LNG will be stored onboard and used to generate 100 percent power at sea.