ENABLING CLEAN MOBILITY
In the transport sector, LNG is already available and reduces greenhouse gas emissions and improves air quality compared to conventional fuels – particularly in heavy duty road transport and shipping which are the most difficult to electrify due to the need to secure high on-board energy capacity storage.
Replacing liquid conventional fuels in the freight transport, both of road and maritime, is highly challenging because of the high energy density of these products and the wide distribution system already in place for so many decades. With an energy density (in volume) 40% lower than diesel, LNG is a lower carbon fuel suitable to cover a wide range of transport applications, from road to maritime.
LNG as a transport fuel, offers numerous environmental advantages and helps improving air quality, namely in cities and ports.
LNG offers environmental advantages over traditional marine petroleum fuels. It is the least polluting marine fuel both in terms of greenhouses gases and local pollutants. It is a solution to the tighter environmental rules and regulations set by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) and by regional air quality controls.
According to the different engine technologies, switching from conventional fuels (HFO) to LNG offers up to 28% at the exhaust CO2 emissions reduction. Depending on the analysis and types of engines the CO2 reductions can vary in the different ranges:
–Tank to Wake: between 18 to 28% for 2-stroke slow speed engines and between 12 to 22% for 4-stroke medium speed engines
– Well to Wake: between 14% to 21% for 2-stroke slow speed engines and between 7% to 15% for 4-stroke medium speed engines
LNG is compliant with IMO’s sulphur regulation and emissions reduction targets and comes as an immediate answer to the IMO sulphur cap with effect since January 2020.
A new generation of vessels (ferries, cruise-ships, bulk carriers, container ships…) are able to use LNG and thus significantly reduce the pollution from maritime shipping operations.
In terms of air pollutants:
- Compared to current heavy fuels, LNG’s sulphur (SOx) content is 1,000 times lower than the IMO 0.5% target, which makes it compatible with the IMO 2020 global sulphur cap.
- LNG reduces NOx emissions by up to 80% compared to the traditional heavy-fuel oil (HFO) used in the shipping sector.
- LNG is able to deliver Particulate Matter (PM) reduction of up to 99 % compared with HFO operation.
- Road Transport
LNG is one of the most promising solutions to achieve emissions targets for heavy-duty vehicle emissions. When switching from conventional fuels (HFO) to LNG, current engine technologies are providing 20% reductions. In particular, when looking at emissions savings from LNG compared to diesel – which represents today 98% of all heavy-duty applications, natural gas combustion provides a 23% CO2 emissions reduction for the same content of energy (56.4 g CO2/MJ vs 73.2 g CO2/MJ).
Moreover, with the increasing development and use of synthetic and BioLNG, the road transport sector could see its GHG emissions reduced by up to almost 100%, achieving net-zero emissions
Also, LNG for road transport provides significant reductions in terms of air pollutants:
- NOx emissions result lower with natural gas compared to Diesel under real driving conditions. NOx emission from LNG trucks are reduced by a range from 40% to 75% compared to Diesel according to the different operating conditions.
- Particulate Matter emissions from LNG engines are negligible due to the gaseous nature of the fuel. In term of mass, generation of particles compared to Diesel is reduced up to 95%.
- SOx is almost negligible.
Enabling Competitive and Cleaner Transport – GIIGNL (2019)