Clean Energy, GE unit partner in natural gas project

CHICAGO, Sept 17 Tue Sep 17, 2013 7:30pm EDT

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CHICAGO, Sept 17 (Reuters) - A company backed by Texas oil man T. Boone Pickens that provides natural gas as transportation fuel is partnering with Canada's Ferus Natural Gas Fuels, GE Ventures and GE Energy Financial Services to jointly deliver liquefied natural gas in the United States.

The consortium, called Eagle LNG Partners, will develop regional LNG projects to meet industry demand for long-haul trucking, rail, mining, marine, and oil and gas services, a spokeswoman for Ferus Natural Gas Fuels told Reuters.

Clean Energy Fuels Corp is the Pickens-backed part of the venture, which is expected to be unveiled Wednesday at the High Horsepower Summit in Chicago.

Natural gas, which roughly translates into cost savings of about 20-40 percent for companies as an alternative to diesel fuel, is being adopted by many industries in the United States as they look to cut costs and reduce carbon emissions.

But critics say the extraction of natural gas releases methane, a greenhouse gas that can be more harmful in the long run than the carbon released by burning other fuels.

Clean Energy Fuels, based in Seal Beach, California, builds and operates compressed natural gas and liquefied natural gas fueling stations. It also makes compressed natural gas and liquefied natural gas equipment and converts vehicles to natural gas.

The companies declined to say how much they would invest in the project. They said that, depending on production volumes, LNG liquefaction plants cost between $40 million and $100 million to build.

Eagle LNG Partners currently is considering projects in Florida, Washington, Colorado, North Dakota, Ohio and Texas, the companies said.

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Comments (1)
shusa2013 wrote:
Here are some important facts to supplement this story . . .

1) Diesel will remain the “dominant” transportation fuel:
- ExxonMobil predicts diesel will surpass gasoline as the number one global transportation fuel by 2020 and continue to increase its share through 2040. Natural gas will remain a small share of the global transportation fuel mix, at 4% by 2040, up from today’s 1%.

- The World Energy Outlook states diesel fuel will remain the “dominant” growth fuel between now and 2035.
Globally, the report suggests the possibility of only a two percent share of natural gas in the heavy duty transport market by 2035.

- The National Petroleum Council in its 2012 report “Advancing Technology for America’s Transportation Future” for the U.S. Department of Energy stated: “Diesel engines will remain the powertrain of choice for HD (heavy duty) vehicles for decades to come because of their power and efficiency.”

2) Natural gas is really cleaner than clean diesel?
The Clean Air Task Force conducted an analysis comparing 2012 CNG buses to 2012 clean diesel buses, which is significant because the natural gas industry often compares 2012/13 CNG buses to older diesel technology to inflate the CNG environmental “advantage” over diesels.

According to the analysis entitled Clean Diesel versus CNG Buses: Cost, Air Quality, Climate Impacts: “Both new diesel and new CNG buses have significantly lower emissions of NOx, PM, and HC than the older diesel buses that they replace. According to EPA’s MOVES emissions model a 2012 model year diesel bus emits 94% less NOx per mile, 98% less PM, and 89% less HC than a model year 2000 (12-year old) diesel bus. A model year 2012 CNG bus emits 80% less NOx, 99% less PM, and 100% less HC than a model year 2000 diesel bus.”

In addition, the analysis stated: “Replacing 10 older diesel buses with new diesel buses will reduce annual NOx, PM, and HC emissions by 4,953 kg, 275 kg, and 421 kg respectively. Replacing 10 older diesel buses with new CNG buses will reduce annual NOx, PM, and HC emissions 4,197 kg, 279 kg, and 471 kg respectively. On a per-bus basis new CNG buses provide slightly greater PM and HC reductions, but lower NOx reductions,than new diesel buses.”

Sep 19, 2013 1:58pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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