Gas Networks Ireland continues its business relationship entered into an agreement with Virginia International Logistics to develop a Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) private station at its premises in Virginia, County Cavan. As part of this agreement, Gas Networks will install, maintain and operate the CNG equipment. Construction on the project will get underway next summer with the dispensing unit expected to be in operation by the end of 2020.
CNG is natural gas which has been compressed to fit into a Natural Gas Vehicle’s (NGV) tank and is particularly suitable for use in commercial vehicles. It is a proven alternative to diesel or petrol and reduces transport costs by up to 25% and carbon emissions by over a fifth. In the future, these vehicles can achieve zero carbon transport when operating on renewable gas.
While Heavy Good Vehicles (HGV) and buses account for only 4% of vehicles on Ireland’s roads, they account for 30% of all emissions in the road transport sector. There are an estimated 25 million NGVs in operation worldwide, and almost two million in Europe.
CNG for transport is one of the key gas technologies set out in Gas Networks Ireland’s Vision 2050 published earlier this year which outlines how it can reduce Ireland’s total carbon emissions by one third and create a net zero carbon gas network.
Additionally, Gas Networks Ireland has already successfully injected renewable gas into the Irish network and a second gas injection facility is currently in the planning process in Co. Cork. This facility will produce renewable gas for heating and transport, supporting Ireland’s growing CNG fleet to switch zero carbon renewable gas.
Ian O’Flynn, Head of Commercial and Corporate Affairs at Gas Networks Ireland said: “Ireland’s transport emissions continue to rise, while this is the by-product of much welcomed economic and employment growth, as a country we face significant challenges to meet our emission reduction targets. Gas Networks Ireland is leading the development of this new, cleaner transport network, to support Ireland in reducing its carbon emissions and to give Ireland’s fleet operators sustainable energy options.”
Virginia International Logistics has been focussed on reducing the emissions from their fleet since 2012. In 2012, they trialled dual fuel vehicles and last year, they made the switch to Compressed Natural Gas and currently have seven low carbon NGVs on the road, with an additional 20 on order for delivery in early 2020. All of these trucks can run on renewable gas.
In October, Virginia International Logistics became the first haulier in Ireland to complete a zero carbon Heavy Goods Vehicle’s (HGV) delivery to Europe. The trucks were fuelled by compressed renewable gas also known as Bio Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) to transport freight to the continent.
Eamon Cole, Director, Virginia International Logistics said “This is the latest low carbon milestone for us. Transport is changing and we are proud to be leading the way in Ireland in moving to a cleaner energy future. As part of our “Green Logistics” policy, introducing CNG fuelled vehicles is one of the ways we are reducing our carbon footprint. The customer demand for alternate fuel transport is also increasing as companies focus even more on having a lower carbon supply chain. Embracing CNG also contributed to being awarded International Haulier of the year and Irish Haulier of the year at the Fleet Magazine Awards last year.”
More on Gas Networks Ireland’s Vision 2050 can be found on: www.gasnetworks.ie/vision2050