United States: renewable natural gas on-road fuel reaches historical high
Natural Gas Vehicles for America (NGVAmerica) and the Coalition for Renewable Natural Gas (RNG Coalition) announced that 32% of all on-road fuel used in natural gas vehicles in calendar year 2018 was renewable natural gas. Biomethane produces net carbon-neutral and even net carbon-negative results when fueling on-road vehicles like short- and long-haul trucks, transit buses, and refuse and recycling collection vehicles. This fuel had an EER-adjusted carbon intensity as low as -303.30 in 2018, according to the California Air Resources Board. By comparison, California’s electricity grid rated between 25.0 and 38.95.
Over the last five years, biomethane use as a transportation fuel has increased 577%, displacing over seven million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e). NGVAmerica and the RNG Coalition report that in 2018 a total of 645 million gasoline gallon equivalent of natural gas was used as a motor fuel. Of that, more than 204 million gasoline gallon equivalent was renewable.
“Proven and affordable natural gas vehicle technology is over 90% cleaner than federal EPA nitrogen oxide emission standards,” said Dan Gage, President of NGVAmerica. “And when those American-made heavy-duty trucks and buses are fueled with renewable natural gas, they are up to 125% cleaner than the cleanest diesel technology in terms of carbon emissions. Biomethane vehicles are the most immediate and cost-effective heavy-duty option when seeking to combat climate change.”
“The environmental advantages of using renewable natural gas to replace fossil fuels in on-road transportation have driven substantial growth in development and investment in new biomethane production across the U.S.,” said Johannes Escudero, RNG Coalition CEO. “The number of North American RNG production facilities has multiplied more than two-and-a-half times in the past five years to almost 100 today, while biomethane use has increased nearly six-fold.”
Biomethane as vehicle fuel has eliminated 7,251,351 metric tons of CO2e over the last five years. Put into perspective, it is:
- Lowering greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to removing 1,539,565 gasoline passenger cars from the roads for one year;
- Reducing CO2 emissions equivalent to 815,950,377 gallons of gasoline or 712,313,458 gallons of diesel consumed. That’s equal to the total energy used by 868,321 U.S. homes for one year;
- Avoiding greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to running 1,537 wind turbines for one year or replacing 275,434,003 traditional lightbulbs with LEDs; and
- Sequestering carbon equal to growing 119,902,624 tree seedlings for ten years or 8,534,274 acres of U.S. forests for one year.