NGVAmerica News Week in Review: September 26, 2016
- Congress Introduces Legislation to Put Cleaner Trucks on U.S. Roads
- NGVAmerica President Matthew Godlewski Touts Advancements of NGVs in Special Webinar
- Wisconsin County to Convert Additional 75 Vehicles to Renewable CNG
- Clean Energy Opens First Public Natural Gas Station in Oregon
- American Power Group Launches British Columbia Dual Fuel Initiative
- Iveco Unveils New Natural Gas-Powered Z Truck Concept
- Matheson Trucking to Showcase its “Green Fleet” Technology in California
- Republic Services Releases 2015 Sustainability Report
- Ferus Natural Gas to Build Proposed LNG Plant for Canadian Mine Projects
Congress Introduces Legislation to Put Cleaner Trucks on U.S. Roads
September 21, 2016
Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH) introduced legislation that provides natural gas and other alternative fueled vehicles with a partial exclusion from the Federal Excise Tax (FET) imposed on heavy-duty trucks. The proposal would accelerate the growth of environmentally-friendly, clean-burning heavy-duty natural gas trucks on America’s highways.
“This common-sense legislation would help level the playing field when it comes to the taxation of alternative fueled trucks and remove another barrier to the greater utilization of clean-burning, low-cost, domestic natural gas in transportation,” said Matthew Godlewski, president of NGVAmerica. “NGVAmerica commends Senator Bill Cassidy and Congressman Tim Ryan for introducing legislation that would result in cleaner and greener trucks on America’s highways.
The U.S. tax code currently imposes a 12 percent federal excise tax (FET) on the sale of all heavy-duty trucks, tractors, and trailers. The revenues are deposited in the Highway Trust Fund. This tax is the highest federal excise tax on a percentage basis on any product and there are strong arguments for eliminating the tax entirely. Because natural gas fuel systems add to the overall cost of a truck, the 12 percent FET unfairly creates an additional tax burden, an average of $7,000 per truck, and an unnecessary disincentive to those purchasing new, cleaner, safer and more fuel efficient trucks.
If passed, this legislation would provide a permanent 35 percent exclusion from the 12 percent FET for alternative fueled heavy-duty trucks. This exclusion is designed to cover the additional incremental cost of heavy-duty natural gas trucks, ensuring the cleaner-burning trucks do not pay more in taxes than comparable diesel-powered trucks.
Some states—South Carolina and New Mexico—already recognize this inequity and exempt portions of the vehicle cost from state sales taxes. The proposal introduced by Senator Cassidy and Congressman Ryan would extend this commonsense tax fix to the FET and would have a significant impact on putting cleaner alternative fueled trucks on America’s roads.
NGVAmerica President Matthew Godlewski Touts Advancements of NGVs in Special Webinar
September 19, 2016
On September 19, NGVAmerica President Matthew Godlewski participated in a special LiveOnWeb broadcast held by Transport Topics titled “Transporting the Nation’s Freight Bill on a Natural Gas Diet.” Godlewski discussed the significant advancements that have been made in recent years to further the strong value proposition of natural gas as a transportation fuel. He joined by industry pioneer T. Boone Pickens and FedEx Chairman, President & CEO, Fred Smith for a one-hour session to promote the variety of benefits of heavy-duty natural gas vehicles.
The webinar was sponsored by Transport Topics and was hosted by Chris Spear, the new President and CEO of the American Trucking Associations (ATA). The webinar was designed to also promote a NGV educational session that will take place on Monday, October 3rd from 4:15-5:45 PM at the ATA Management Conference and Exhibition in Las Vegas.
The webinar is available to watch on the Transport Topics website here.
Wisconsin County to Convert Additional 75 Vehicles to Renewable CNG
September 22, 2016
Dane County, Wisconsin has announced bold climate change initiatives in a 2017 budget proposal. The proposed budget would accelerate the county’s conversion of its cars, trucks and other fleet vehicles to cleaner burning renewable CNG. The budget includes funds to purchase 75 CNG vehicles by the end of next year, including nearly one-third of the county’s highway fleet.
“Dane County has a consistent track record of pursuing cleaner, greener sources of energy, reducing our reliance on fossil fuels, and reinventing county operations to make them run better not only for the public, but also the environment,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. “This is our boldest action yet to address climate change and lead the way for our community and the State of Wisconsin.”
The county has also partnered with the private sector to build manure digesters near Waunakee and Middleton that capture methane that can be converted to clean-burning RNG. The county says using more of the RNG produced at these sites can reduce carbon emissions by another 30,000 tons per year.
Clean Energy Opens First Public Natural Gas Station in Oregon
September 22, 2016
Clean Energy has opened its first public natural gas station in the state of Oregon on I-5 in Central Point, outside of Medford. The addition of this station gives customers the ability to drive from San Diego to Seattle using Clean Energy’s “America’s Natural Gas Highway.”
The station, located at a Pilot Travel Center Plaza, dispenses both LNG and CNG and is open to the public 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Matheson Trucking, a United States Postal Service contracted carrier, is using the station for its California to Seattle runs.
“The addition of this station allows us the strategic advantage of being able to rely on natural gas throughout our entire distribution system,” said Joshua Matheson, vice president of operations for Matheson Trucking. “With an annual fleet distance of close to 36 million miles, we are always looking for ways to reduce GHG-emissions, and being able to use natural gas, specifically for our Los Angeles to Seattle runs, will help us do just that.”
Earlier this year, Clean Energy expanded its relationship with Fred Meyer Stores in Oregon by providing the large grocery retailer with Redeem RNG for its fleet of heavy duty trucks. Clean Energy also announced the opening of a private station in Wilsonville for Republic Services, the nation’s second largest solid waste management company. The station is supporting the addition of 16 CNG solid waste vehicles, bringing the total number of natural gas vehicles operated by Republic Services in Oregon to 35.
American Power Group Launches British Columbia Dual Fuel Initiative
September 20, 2016
American Power Group has entered an Authorized Dealer Agreement and a Certified Installer Agreement with Cullen Diesel Power to introduce APG’s Turbocharged Natural Gas V5000 Dual Fuel Systems to British Columbia, Canada. The first APG dual fuel order for ten systems will be installed on conversions for Clark Freightways in Coquitlam, British Columbia and funded through a local natural gas conversion incentive program. Shipment of the initial ten APG systems is scheduled for September 2016.
The Clark management team are leaders in green initiatives and are committed to reducing their carbon footprint through continual research, investment, and implementation of fuel conservation and emission reduction solutions.
“We look forward to working with Cullen Diesel Power and Clark Freightways,” said Lyle Jensen, American Power Group Corporation CEO. “This pilot program is a ‘win-win’ scenario for the fleet owners and citizens of British Columbia.”
Iveco Unveils New Natural Gas-Powered Z Truck Concept
September 23, 2016
Last week, Iveco launched its natural gas-powered Z Truck concept for the European market at the IAA Commercial Vehicle Show in Hannover, Germany. The Iveco Z Truck features automated driving technology, an aerodynamic design, and a waste heat recovery system.
However, while some manufacturers have chosen the electric route, Iveco has fitted its concept with a powertrain fueled by LNG technology. The conformable LNG storage tanks are made of insulated aluminum.
Boosting the truck’s range is the inclusion of a Rankine Cycle Waste Heat Recovery system, said Iveco, which “exploits exhaust gas as a heat source to recover energy, with the result of a further fuel economy gain while driving.”
All aspects of the truck have drivers and the environment in mind, said Iveco brand president Pierre Lahutte. “At Iveco we have been working to constantly reduce the impact of our vehicles with alternative fuels such as bio-LNG, and putting the driver and the customer at the center of our technological and design development,” added Lahutte.
Matheson Trucking to Showcase its “Green Fleet” Technology in California
September 21, 2016
Matheson Trucking, and its Postal Services Division, will display one of its new LNG-powered trucks at the 11th Annual California Capital Air Show during the first weekend in October at Mather Field in California. The company’s pavilion will be located near the free Kid’s Zone where children and families can get a close up view of this advanced technology and have a chance to sit behind the wheel. Matheson is also a sponsor of the Performers Tent at Show Center.
“Our company is committed to improving air quality by lowering greenhouse gas emissions as we convert our fleet to use CNG and LNG,” said Chuck Mellor, Chief Operating Officer for Matheson, one of the country’s 10 largest contract carriers for the U.S. Postal Service.
The Matheson pavilion at the Capital Air Show will also offer information about the company and its clean energy expansion program designed to improve air quality, lower GHG emissions and decrease diesel fuel consumption on routes served by the Matheson Postal Services Division.
Republic Services Releases 2015 Sustainability Report
September 19, 2016
Republic Services recently released its latest Sustainability Report for the 2015 Fiscal Year. The Report depicts the Company’s efforts to further improve its environmental and social impacts through decreased vehicle emissions, innovative landfill technologies, use of renewable energy, community engagement, and employee growth opportunities. The 2015 Sustainability Report demonstrates continued progress toward Republic’s four sustainability goals, and represents its latest achievements as part of its Blue Planet sustainability initiative.
Republic operates a fleet of nearly 2,500 CNG-powered vehicles, which represents approximately 16 percent of its entire vocational fleet. Republic is committed to achieving various sustainability goals by 2018, including the development of at least two landfill gas-to-energy projects per year and continuing to reduce fleet emissions from direct operational impacts by 3 percent.
Also in 2015, Republic was among the top companies recognized by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), a leading international non-profit organization dedicated to measuring and disclosing environmental information, in the 2015 CDP S&P 500 Climate Change Report. Republic earned a Disclosure score of 98 out of 100, which reflects its strong commitment to transparency, quality and completeness, and an A- in Performance. Achieving an A is the highest Performance score possible.
To view and download the Report, click here.
Ferus Natural Gas to Build Proposed LNG Plant for Canadian Mine Projects
September 21, 2016
Vancouver-based Casino Mining Corporation and Selwyn Chihong Mining have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Ferus Natural Gas Fuels for LNG supply to the proposed Casino and the Selwyn Chihong mine projects located in the Yukon and Northwest Territories (NWT), Canada.
To ensure proximal and long-term security of supply for the mines, Ferus NGF plans to build and operate a two-phase LNG plant in the vicinity of Fort Nelson, British Columbia. The Fort Nelson area was strategically chosen to minimize the cost of transporting the LNG to the mines, contributing to supply reliability and strong project economics. Each phase, anticipated to be commissioned in 2020 and 2022 respectively, will produce 300,000 gallons per day of LNG and will supply the power generation plant and mining operations for the two projects.
The proposed LNG plant in Fort Nelson is expected to meet world class safety and environmental performance standards and will be completed in close collaboration and consultation with the relevant community and First Nations groups in northeast BC, Yukon and NWT. Furthermore, this plant will create direct construction and fuel transportation jobs in the region, and with the liquefaction of up to 50 mmcf/day of natural gas, could indirectly create jobs by re-activating some upstream drilling activity.
“The use of LNG instead of diesel in our operations will significantly reduce the cost of power generation and will eliminate 140,000 tons per year of CO2 emissions over the current 22-year mine life,” said Paul West-Sells, President & CEO of Western Copper and Gold Corp., the public company that owns Casino.