Checking in with Cummins-Westport’s CNG Powered ISX-G Engine

Cummins-Westport, an industry leader in vehicle engines powered by Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), is rolling out a 12 liter engine in 2013 targeted at the heavy duty truck market.

This engine, called the ISX-G, employs a number of neat technical innovations designed to help it use natural gas efficiently, letting truck operators enjoy the benefits of CNG as a cleaner burning and more affordable fuel.

Check out the short video below for an overview of the features of the ISX-G, I found it interesting and my knowledge of engines doesn’t extend past refilling my wiper fluid.

Spectra’s Doug Bloom Talks Natgas in the Vancouver Sun

Stories about the potential economic benefits of natural gas sourced from within North America have become increasingly common in the past year.  Last week the Vancouver Sun got in on the act with a story highlighting the perspectives of a couple of key leaders from NWGA member companies, Doug Bloom from Spectra Energy and John Walker of FortisBC.

We’ll cover the FortisBC section of the article in our next blog post; today I want to highlight some of the great insights provided by Doug Bloom, President Western Pipelines, for NWGA Member Company Spectra Energy.

In a talk given to the Vancouver board of trade Mr. Bloom hit on the growth in British Columbia natural gas supply, a development that has led to more greater supply diversity not only in Western Canada but throughout the Pacific Northwest, saying B.C. has truly huge natural gas resources. We’ve got over 100 years of supply at current production rate.”

Bloom continued by highlighting some key environmental benefits provided by switching to natural gas:

“By shifting 25 per cent of current energy use from coal to natural gas, Canada and the U.S. could meet their national emissions (reduction) targets. 

“Gas in transportation is also an important opportunity. A company called PIRA, Petroleum Industry Research Associates, a prominent consultant, said that gas demand in large trucks and fleet applications in the United States could reach 14 (billion cubic feet) a day by 2030. 

“That could reduce diesel demand by up to two million barrels per day or more through a mix of LNG and compressed natural gas applications.”

Click here for the entire article.

DOE Report Affirms Role of Natural Gas as Foundation Fuel

Washington, D.C. – A recent report commissioned by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) entitled “Macroeconomic Impacts of LNG Exports from the United States” affirms the position of natural gas as a foundation fuel for the United States and the nation’s energy future. The American Gas Association (AGA) is encouraged to see DOE examining the important role that natural gas will serve in our nation’s energy and economic future. 

“The Department of Energy study acknowledges the tremendous impact our domestic abundance of natural gas is having on energy markets at home and abroad. Natural gas already provides one-fourth of our nation’s energy. With natural gas as a foundation fuel for a clean and secure energy portfolio, we can meet our national goals of boosting our economy, improving our environment and increasing our energy security,” said AGA President and CEO Dave McCurdy.

“The report states that our nation’s natural gas resource base is able to satisfy existing and new markets at very competitive prices. DOE analysis indicates that U.S. exports of natural gas would allow for continued stable pricing for the 177 million Americans who depend on the safe and reliable delivery of natural gas every day.”

“We envision a future where natural gas not only provides energy for homes and businesses, but runs a significant number of our vehicles, generates power and supports other forms of renewable energy. America’s natural gas utilities will continue to provide safe and reliable service to our customers today while building the 21st century infrastructure necessary to serve the nation’s energy needs tomorrow. ”

Kirschner talks CNG on the radio and at Medford station opening

If you’re a radio listener in Southern Oregon odds are pretty good you ran into NWGA Executive Director, Dan Kirschner, at some point this week. Dan was all over the dial talking natural gas in the build up to today’s (December 5) opening of a public Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) fueling station in Medford, OR.

Click below to listen in on archived copies of Dan’s radio appearances this week, we’ll update this list as the other interviews are posted online:

* The Bill Meyer Show on AM 1440 KMED December 3 (mp3 file opens in a new window. Length: about 14 minutes).

The opening of a Medford CNG station is another positive step in the development of a “natural gas highway” along the I-5 corridor as the lone public CNG station between between the San Francisco and Seattle metro areas. Rogue Valley Clean Cities hosted the grand opening festivities, where Dan served as MC, and has a wealth of can’t miss information on their website.

Stay tuned for more CNG developments in 2013!

Puget Sound Energy sends 24 natural gas service employees to New York to help restore heat to victims of Superstorm Sandy

BELLEVUE, WA.– Two dozen Puget Sound Energy natural gas employees today headed to New York to help restore heat for customers on Long Island, where overnight temperatures this week are expected to dip into the 20s.

PSE employees will work with National Grid to replace natural gas meter sets damaged nearly five weeks ago by Superstorm Sandy; they will also  inspect and relight equipment and appliances inside homes and businesses.

PSE’s team of 21 technicians and three supervisors will work for 2½ weeks and return home the weekend before Christmas. They will join natural gas crews from other utilities around the country.

PSE received the mutual aid request from the Northeast Gas Association to help restore natural gas service for the storm-damaged communities on Long Island.

“Every member of our PSE team is sacrificing more than two weeks with their families to get the heat back on in time for the holidays for so many people who were affected by the devastation of Sandy,” said Sue McLain, PSE senior vice president of delivery operations. “When a disaster like Superstorm Sandy strikes, utilities help out each other to restore service to their customers. Our hearts go out to everyone affected by the storm.”

PSE sent the employee team to New York after evaluating and confirming that it has an adequate number of responders and customer service technicians to respond to routine natural gas-service calls and emergency situations in Snohomish, King, Pierce, Thurston, Lewis and Kittitas counties.

AMP Americas Converts Trucking Fleet to Renewable Natural Gas

CHICAGO, Dec. 3, 2012 — /PRNewswire/ — AMP Americas announced today that it has commenced operating its trucking fleet on renewable natural gas produced from the first agricultural digester project in the United States to qualify for Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) with the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA).

AMP Americas owns two compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling stations in Indiana and, in partnership with Fair Oaks Farms, manages a fleet of 42 CNG milk-transport trucks (one of the largest in the country).  These long-haul trucks now run on renewable CNG made from manure sourced at the dairy in a process called anaerobic digestion.  Renewable CNG is the chemical equivalent of fossil-based natural gas and is obtained from biomass, often food or animal waste.  The fleet runs in excess of 20,000 miles a day delivering milk throughout the Midwest.

“A vision of producing renewable natural gas for our fleet has become a reality.  We are extremely proud of the dedicated team that, over the course of the past two and half years, has allowed this to succeed.  It is a significant day for AMP as well as for both the dairy and transportation industries,” stated Mark Stoermann, Operations Director for AMP, who oversaw the project.

AMP Americas focuses on displacing liquid fuels with CNG and works with clients who want to run their fleets on CNG rather than diesel, substantially reducing and often locking in their fuel costs. CNG has significant environmental benefits producing approximately 25% less carbon dioxide than diesel when sourced using utility supplied natural gas and nearly 100% less carbon dioxide when using renewable natural gas, along with reductions in sulphur oxide and nitrogen oxide emissions of up to 90% and 60% respectively. AMP plans to use renewable CNG whenever possible.

AMP, along with its joint venture partner, Trillium CNG, will be breaking ground soon on the construction of additional CNG stations in Texas and along the I-65 and I-75 corridors, which are major trucking routes. “The stations will be open to the public though the primary customers will be heavy-duty and long-haul trucking fleets,” says Nathan Laurell, CEO of AMP Americas.

Stations will feature fast-fill capabilities and redundant equipment providing increased fill speed and reduced downtime while delivering exceptional reliability backed by a 24/7 on call service-team. The stations will also accept fleet cards and major credit cards and offer special fuel-pricing programs to encourage fleets to take advantage of the economic and environmental benefits of CNG.