Natural Gas Vehicle Advocates Submit SAFE Vehicles Rulemaking Comments
Significant Economic, Environmental, and Safety Benefits Achievable with NGV Inclusion
Washington, DC – Natural Gas Vehicles for America (NGVAmerica), the Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas (RNG Coalition), the American Gas Association (AGA), and the American Public Gas Association (APGA) today submitted comments to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) related to their proposed Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule for Model Years 2021-2026 Passenger Cars and Light Trucks.
In their submission, NGVAmerica, the RNG Coalition, AGA, and APGA called upon NHTSA and EPA to use this rulemaking opportunity to expand incentives for NGVs in the light-duty sector—particularly for pickup trucks, work vans, and sport utility vehicles—highlighting several key benefits of natural gas use in transportation:
- NGVs offer unmatched emission reduction benefits. Natural gas engines achieve emission reductions that are 90 percent cleaner than federal standards without requiring complex emission control systems or the use of additives. When fueled with renewable natural gas (biogas captured from landfills, wastewater, and food and agricultural waste) natural gas engines are carbon neutral—even carbon negative—reducing greenhouse gas emissions by upwards of 125 percent.
- NGVs are road-tested, proven, and commercially-available today. No other powertrain is as sustainable, clean, domestic, abundant, safe, reliable, affordable, adaptable, and competitive across all vehicle classes.
- NGVs save money and support American workers. Reliant on American technology, natural gas is a low cost, domestically-abundant fuel with an established and growing refueling infrastructure across the country. Economic benefits for light-duty NGV fleets are tremendous.
- NGVs achieve real environmental and climate benefits without sacrificing passenger safety.
This rulemaking, along with current market dynamics—growing demand for light trucks, a significant increase in the availability of low-cost domestic natural gas, and the expanded availability of renewable natural gas—provides the right circumstances for the light-duty natural gas vehicle market to expand.
NGVs deserve an equal opportunity to compete in the market based on cost and real-world emission benefits, and government regulators should not effectively mandate a specific clean technology at the exclusion of others. NGVAmerica, the RNG Coalition, AGA, and APGA support changes to the current regulatory framework to incorporate provisions that more fully account for all the environmental benefits of natural gas vehicles, give meaning to statutory provisions intended to encourage NGVs, and incorporate meaningful incentives for manufacturers to produce natural gas vehicles.
NGVAmerica, RNG Coalition, AGA, and APGA recommendations include:
- align the fuel economy and greenhouse gas credit provisions for NGVs;
- extend the use of the 0.15 factor for dual fuel vehicles;
- amend the driving range and drive-to-empty requirement for dual-fuel NGVs;
- provide stronger sales multiplier credits for the production of NGVs;
- amend the full-sized pickup truck credits;
- provide incentives for gaseous-prep vehicles; and
- ensure the resulting rule supports one, unified national program.
NGVAmerica is a national organization of over 200 companies, environmental groups, and government organizations dedicated to the development of a growing, profitable, and sustainable market for vehicles powered by natural gas or biomethane. NGVAmerica member companies produce, distribute, and market natural gas and biomethane across North America, manufacture and service natural gas vehicles, engines, and equipment, and operate fleets powered by clean-burning gaseous fuels. Find out more at: www.ngvamerica.org.
The Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas is the trade association representing over 150 companies and organizations dedicated to the advancement of RNG, including as an ultra-clean, domestically produced, renewable fuel in North America. The RNG industry captures and converts methane (raw biogas) captured from organic waste streams from landfills, wastewater treatment facilities, livestock and agricultural digesters, and commercial food waste facilities, and converts the biogas into RNG. RNG is fully fungible with conventional natural gas and is used as a direct substitute for most commercial, industrial and residential natural gas applications. Find out more at: www.rngcoalition.com.
The American Gas Association, founded in 1918, represents more than 200 local energy companies that deliver clean natural gas throughout the United States. There are more than 74 million residential, commercial and industrial natural gas customers in the U.S., of which 94 percent — more than 70 million customers — receive their gas from AGA members. Today, natural gas meets more than one-fourth of the United States’ energy needs. Find out more at: www.aga.org.
The American Public Gas Association is the only not-for-profit trade organization representing America’s publicly owned natural gas local distribution companies (LDCs). APGA represents the interests of nearly 750 public gas utilities before Congress, federal agencies and other energy-related stakeholders by developing regulatory and legislative policies that further the goals of our members. In addition, APGA organizes meetings, seminars, and workshops with a specific goal to improve the reliability, operational efficiency, and regulatory environment in which public gas systems operate. Find out more at: www.apga.org