Ulster Bank’s Lombard supports Virginia Transport’s Green future

Pictured (L-R) are Gary Duffy from Ulster Bank’s Lombard and Ray Cole, Transport Director at Virginia International Logistics. Picture by Shane O'Neill, SON Photographic

County Cavan headquartered Virginia International Logistics is continuously investing in greener technology for its fleet with twenty new Iveco Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) trucks, supported by Ulster Bank’s asset finance division, Lombard Ireland.

The award winning family-owned business currently operates six CNG tractor-units and is building a more sustainable transport solution with five new Iveco Stralis Natural Power (NP) CNG trucks – plus 15 more on order, together with installing two CNG refuelling stations  at Ballycoolin, Dublin and Virginia, Cavan, which will help lower running costs and further reduce its carbon footprint.

Commenting on the initiative, Ray Cole, Transport Director at Virginia International Logistics, said: “We’ve grown our business substantially since we bought our first truck back in 1982, with our drivers now covering over 12 million kilometres across Europe every year. However, as we expanded we became more aware of the negative impact our business was having on the natural environment and we started to look at meaningful ways of reducing our carbon footprint. These 20 CNG trucks represent the biggest leap forward yet for our company in achieving that goal. I want to thank Ulster Bank’s Lombard for making it possible for us not only to grow, but to grow in the right way.”

Pictured (L-R) are Ray Cole, Transport Director at Virginia International Logistics and Gary Duffy from Ulster Bank’s Lombard.
Picture by Shane O’Neill, SON Photographic

According to Gas Networks Ireland, which is developing the technology in Ireland, CNG trucks emit 99% less particulate matter, 80% less Sulphur Dioxide, 70% less Nitrogen Oxide, and a fifth less Carbon Dioxide than equivalent petrol or diesel vehicles. Currently used in over 27 million vehicles worldwide, Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) is just that – natural gas that is compressed to fit in the fuel tanks of a Natural Gas powered Vehicle. However, the CNG refuelling infrastructure in Ireland is in its infancy, with plans to have 70 high capacity fast-fill stations installed on the motorway network within ten years.

Commenting on the investment, Colm Furlong, Head of Asset and Invoice Finance at Ulster Bank’s Lombard, said: “We are delighted to team up with Virginia International Logistics and help them fulfil their ambition of being the best partner in green logistics. For us, it’s a great source of pride to be involved with a company that is leading the way in Ireland with new technology that will ultimately benefit us all. That’s the significant advantage of asset finance – it gives companies the power and flexibility to forge a sustainable path forward and Ulster Bank’s Lombard stands ready to support any company willing to make the leap towards a greener future.”

This Natural Gas truck fleet investment by Virginia International Logistics forms part of the company’s long-term strategy aimed at reducing its carbon footprint. In addition to providing eco-driver training and implementing fuel and tyre management techniques, the company won best Environmental Practice at the Fleet Transport Awards in 2015 and the overall Irish Haulier of the Year 2018, along with the International Haulier of the Year title, while the Iveco Stralis NP won the Fleet Transpot Irish Green Fleet Truck of the Year award.