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NGVAmerica News Week in Review: October 10, 2016

  • CSA Group Publishes Best Practices for Handling CNG Fuel Containers
  • Agility Fuel Systems and Hexagon Composites Close Merger to Create Agility Fuel Solutions
  • TruStar Energy Celebrates Grand Opening of CNG Station for Rogue Disposal
  • The Volkswagen Group Opts for LNG-Powered Vessels to Transport Vehicles
  • TruStar Energy Breaks Ground on Cincinnati’s First Public CNG Fueling Station
  • City of Calgary Celebrates Groundbreaking on Bus Storage and Transit Facility
  • American Power Group Launches Pacific Northwest Dual Fuel Initiative
  • UPS Recognized by EPA with SmartWay Excellence Award
  • Freedom CNG Installs Back-Up Power for Houston Fueling Stations
  • Carnival Signs Fueling Agreement with Shell to Fuel World’s First LNG Cruise Ships


CSA Group Publishes Best Practices for Handling CNG Fuel Containers

October 7, 2016

CSA Group recently published a new best practice for handling end-of-life CNG vehicle fuel containers that provides guidance on defueling, decommissioning, and disposal to improve safety in the marketplace.

CSA EXP 2.1, Defueling, decommissioning, and disposal of compressed natural gas vehicle fuel containers is CSA Group’s best practices document published for the North American natural gas industry. CSA EXP 2.1 complements CSA Group’s “Cradle-to- Grave” engagement with industry on CNG container issues including: research and development support, standards development (NGV 2, Compressed Natural Gas Vehicle Fuel Containers standard and B109, Natural Gas for Vehicles Installation Code), certification and testing, container inspection, and end of life. The document addresses how to defuel and decommission containers, handle condemned containers at their end of life (EOL) including purging and destroying containers, as well as providing recommended container tracking and recording devices to ensure that containers are taken out of commission and destroyed either at the end of their life cycle or after being condemned.

This development creates the opportunity for regulators, vehicle owners, and service industries—such as tow truck operators, first responders—to now reference a published industry best practices document.

“The release of EXP 2.1 is a material demonstration of the maturity and durability of the CNG market,” said John Eihusen, Principal Engineer of Hexagon Composites and Co-chair of CSA Group’s Cylinder Defueling, Decommissioning and Disposal Technical Subcommittee. “To be in a position of addressing this end of the product development cycle in a growing market is an excellent indicator of the continued viability and vitality of the entire industry.”

Future editions of the document will focus on LNG tanks and hydrogen containers. In addition, content from this document will be considered for incorporation in learning products to assist in dissemination of the information and implementation of the best practices.

The document is currently available for purchase in English in PDF format. For more information on CSA EXP 2.1, Defueling, decommissioning, and disposal of compressed natural gas vehicle fuel containers, visit CSA Group’s website.

As a matter of additional information, the U.S. Department of Energy Clean Cities Program has published a video that covers the steps involved in CNG fuel tank defueling, decommissioning, and disposal.


Agility Fuel Systems and Hexagon Composites Close Merger to Create Agility Fuel Solutions

October 3, 2016

Agility Fuel Systems and Hexagon Composites have finalized their merger effective October 3, 2016. The merger unites Hexagon Composites’ CNG Automotive Products Division, which includes medium- and heavy-duty vehicle composite cylinder manufacturing operations and its bus systems, with Agility to form the new company, Agility Fuel Solutions. The new entity is owned equally by Hexagon Composites and Agility’s current investors.

“We are excited to combine two industry leaders to establish Agility Fuel Solutions which will allow us to continue to lead the global adoption of clean fuels through unmatched engineering, innovation and best value to our customers,” said Kathleen Ligocki, CEO Agility Fuel Solutions.

The strategic integration of the two companies will result in Agility Fuel Solutions having over 400 employees at five manufacturing facilities in North America, South America and Europe, two research and development centers, and sales offices on four continents ready to serve the global market. The merger will reduce up-front costs for clean transportation technology, expediting the commercialization of new product ideas, accelerating returns on investments, and driving the adoption of natural gas in the world’s commercial fleets.

“Agility Fuel Solutions is perfectly positioned to lead the global commercial vehicle market’s transition to natural gas,” said David Bandele, Chairman of the Board, Agility Fuel Solutions and Chief Financial Officer, Hexagon Composites.

Hexagon’s Mobile Pipeline, Hydrogen Products and Light-Duty Vehicles divisions will continue to operate as Hexagon Composites.


TruStar Energy Celebrates Grand Opening of CNG Station for Rogue Disposal

October 5, 2016

TruStar Energy has celebrated the grand opening of a CNG fueling station for Rogue Disposal & Recycling located in White City, Oregon. The CNG station will serve both the solid waste service provider’s growing CNG fleet, as well as the public.

“We believe that clean air is critical to our communities’ long-term sustainability, quality of life and economic success,” said Lee Fortier, Engineering Manager, Rogue Disposal. “We are proud to be part of an effort to bring greater access to cleaner burning transportation fuels like compressed natural gas to the Rogue Valley.”

The company will be using the station to fuel their existing CNG fleet, and anticipates opening their station to the public this fall. This will be one of only three publicly accessible CNG fueling stations along a 400 mile stretch of the I-5 corridor, between Chico, California and Eugene, Oregon.

Rogue has eight CNG-fueled recycling and waste collection trucks in its fleet of 36 vehicles, with three more on order currently. The company plans to complete a total conversion of the fleet over the next eight years.

The fast-fill station has three 200 HP Ariel compressors, packaged by ANGI, a PSB gas dryer, and two ANGI fast-fill dispensers. The station is capable of producing almost 11 GGEs per minute.


The Volkswagen Group Opts for LNG-Powered Vessels to Transport Vehicles

October 5, 2016

The Volkswagen Group has decided to significantly improve the environmental balance of its marine transport fleet by using two vessels powered by LNG on routes between Europe and North America. The two planned charter vessels from Siem Car Carriers are a genuine milestone on the way to eco-friendlier marine transport. In addition, the Group intends to transfer vehicle and material transport in Europe increasingly from trucks to lower-emission means of transport such as ships in the future.

“The Volkswagen Group is shouldering its responsibility for the environment. This not only applies to our cars but also to our production and logistics,” said Wolfram Thomas, Head of Group Production. “By commissioning the two LNG-powered freighters for the route between Europe and North America, Volkswagen Group Logistics is forging ahead with environmentally compatible, resource-efficient transport.”

The two LNG-powered vessels have a capacity of about 4,500 vehicles. The car carriers, equipped with a 105,000 cubic foot LNG tank installed below deck, will have a comparable capacity to conventional transatlantic freighters. Both ships will feature a 12,600 kW engine developed by MAN Diesel & Turbo.

Volkswagen says the use of the two LNG-powered freighters for vehicle logistics across the North Atlantic will reduce emissions per ship and year by up to 25 percent in the case of CO2, up to 30 percent in the case of NOx, and up to 60 percent in the case of particulate matters (PM), while SOx emissions will be cut by as much as 100 percent. Emissions will be further reduced by the use of a highly advanced dual-fuel marine engine with direct injection and exhaust gas treatment.



TruStar Energy Breaks Ground on Cincinnati’s First Public CNG Fueling Station

October 6, 2016

TruStar Energy has broken ground on Kentuckiana Cleanfuel’s public CNG fueling station, the first for Cincinnati. The public station, located in Sharonville, Ohio, will feature three dual-hose dispensers, capable of providing up to 15 GGEs per minute using the four 250 horsepower Ariel compressors packaged by ANGI. In addition, the station will be capable of providing fuel to customers 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“We will have a total of four stations completed and fueling within the next year-and-a-half, and we always make sure to have enough volume locked in for success before we ever break ground,” said Alan Steiden, President of Kentuckiana Cleanfuel. “Now is the time for Cincinnati fleets to join the CNG revolution.”

The station will be located in a transportation-based industrial park with easy access to the I-75 and I-71 corridors. The station will also operate as a depot for M&M Cartage Class 8 Freightliner trucks.


City of Calgary Celebrates Groundbreaking on Bus Storage and Transit Facility

October 6, 2016

The City of Calgary today celebrated a groundbreaking event for the Stoney CNG Bus Storage and Transit Facility. The new facility will provide storage and maintenance space for Calgary Transit’s new fleet of CNG buses as well as diesel buses that are currently stored outside the City’s other bus garages. The complex will be capable of housing a minimum of 424 buses, 36 maintenance bays, two steam cleaning bays, as well as on-site CNG fueling infrastructure.

“I’m excited about the economic impact the construction of this facility will bring to the city, and the permanent jobs created with the operation and maintenance of this bus storage and transit facility,” said Mayor Naheed Nenshi.

Located in the Stoney industrial area in north-central Calgary, it initially provides diesel bus operations, recognizing the transition period needed to introduce CNG buses into Transit’s fleet.

Capital cost for this project is approximately $174 million. The Federal Government, through PPP Canada, has committed to an investment of up to $48.4 million towards the construction of this facility. The City has signed a fixed price agreement with Plenary Infrastructure Calgary LP to design, build, finance and maintain the Stoney Transit Facility. Earth work construction has started with the completion of the facility scheduled for early 2019.


American Power Group Launches Pacific Northwest Dual Fuel Initiative

October 4, 2016

American Power Group has signed two new Class 8 Authorized Dealers and Certified Installers to help launch APG’s dual fuel technology in the Pacific Northwest. The two new APG Dealer/Installers are Truck Source, which is located in Portland, Oregon and provides heavy duty truck sales, service and parts, and Truck ‘N Travel, a full service TA Travel Center located north of Eugene in Coburg, Oregon and operates a CNG fueling station.

APG’s first Pacific Northwest dual fuel customer is GloryBee is headquartered in Eugene, Oregon and is dedicated to multiple sustainability practices to reduce energy usage and lower production of greenhouse gasses to minimize their carbon footprint.

“These dual fuel trucks are expected to produce even cleaner fuel emissions and reduce additional greenhouse gasses compared to our current straight biodiesel initiative,” said Howard James, GloryBee’s Maintenance Manager. “We have been very pleased with APG’s dual fuel performance and expect to expand its adoption to additional trucks in our fleet.”


UPS Recognized by EPA with SmartWay Excellence Award

October 4, 2016

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) presented UPS with the SmartWay Excellence award which recognizes outstanding environmental performance and leadership. UPS was one of 53 companies to receive the award, representing the best environmental performers of SmartWay’s more than 3,500 partners. UPS was acknowledged for its work to innovate with alternative fuels and advanced technologies, its sustainable approach for its operational practices, and, its transparency for reporting SmartWay data to achieve its emissions reductions. UPS operates one of the largest alternative fuel and advanced technology fleets in the U.S.

“As the SmartWay program completes its 12th year, EPA recognizes its top Carrier Partners for their commitment to an efficient and environmentally responsible freight transportation supply chain,” said Christopher Grundler, EPA’s Office Director of Transportation & Air Quality. “We all depend on the freight sector, and these award-winning SmartWay carriers have demonstrated that it is possible to compete in this space while placing an emphasis on environmental integrity, allowing for reduced fuel costs which increase revenue while also lowering greenhouse gas emissions.”

The UPS fleet includes CNG, LNG and other alternative fuel vehicles. In addition to its use of alternative vehicles, UPS uses millions of gallons of lower carbon footprint renewable diesel and renewable natural gas (RNG) in its fleet each year.
Freedom CNG Installs Back-Up Power for Houston Fueling Stations

October 3, 2016

The next time Houston experiences a major power outage, METRO busses, CenterPoint Energy trucks, Texas Department of Transportation vehicles and others powered by CNG won’t have to wait for power to be restored in order to refuel.

CNG fueling stations operated by Freedom CNG are now the first in Houston and among the first in Texas to be equipped with dedicated, on-site back-up power generation at each of its truck-friendly sites to ensure indefinite, 24-hour operation if electricity is interrupted for any reason.

“When there’s a power outage and service trucks can’t get diesel fuel, they have to sit,” notes Bill Winters, co-managing partner of Freedom CNG which operates three of Houston’s 15 compressed natural gas fueling stations. “But that’s exactly when services are needed most.”

Freedom CNG says more than 2,000 short-haul vehicles in Houston operate on CNG for local private and public-sector fleets, including those for personnel and equipment necessary to restore power and deliver goods and services to those in need. In addition, close to 100 area school busses also operate on CNG and earlier this year METRO unveiled a new fleet of 50 CNG transit busses.

Freedom CNG stations currently fuel vehicles for Houston Distributing Company, METRO, Williams Energy, AT&T, Oak Farms, Frito Lay, Texas Department of Transportation, Republic Waste, Waste Corporation of America, Silver Eagle Distributors, Waste Management, and CenterPoint Energy, among others.


Carnival Signs Fueling Agreement with Shell to Fuel World’s First LNG Cruise Ships 

October 3, 2016

Carnival Corporation signed a framework agreement with Shell to be its supplier of marine LNG to power the world’s first fully LNG-powered cruise ships. Under this framework agreement, Shell will initially supply Carnival Corporation’s AIDA Cruises and Costa Cruises brands with fuel for two new LNG-powered ships expected to launch in 2019 with itineraries visiting popular northwest European and Mediterranean ports.

As part of the agreement, these two ships, built with Carnival Corporation’s next-generation “green cruising” ship design, will utilize Shell’s infrastructure in cruise ports to refuel with LNG throughout their itineraries. The vessels, equipped with dual-fuel engines, are the first of a new generation of cruise ships fully powered by LNG both while in port and at sea.

“We are committed to reducing our air emissions and improving air quality by evaluating new and established solutions such as LNG—an especially promising option because of its environmental and other benefits,” said Tom Strang, senior vice president of maritime affairs for Carnival Corporation.

These ships will be the first in the cruise industry use LNG to generate 100 percent of the ship’s power both in port and on the open sea – an innovation that will significantly improve air quality to help protect the environment and support Carnival Corporation’s sustainability goals.

The company recently ordered three additional next-generation cruise ships that will be fully powered by LNG, bringing its fully LNG-powered ship orders total to seven across four of its 10 global cruise lines. Two of the new LNG-powered ships are designated for the world’s most popular cruise brand, Carnival Cruise Line, with delivery dates expected in 2020 and 2022, and one is designated for P&O Cruises UK with an expected delivery date in 2020. The remaining two vessels will also be built for the Costa Cruises and AIDA Cruises brands and are expected to enter service in 2021.