Gas is back in a big way thanks to the UK’s air quality challenge, according to Calor Gas’s head of strategy and corporate affairs Paul Blacklock.
Speaking to delegates at Freight in the City, where the company was showcasing its electric LPG range extended rigid truck developed with Emoss, Blacklock said “until three years ago LPG fuel seemed to be on its way out.
"Then the air quality crisis and the VW scandal happened”.
Blacklock said that with a ready built infrastructure of LPG, the fuel source could be described as the ‘cheap date’ when it came to tackling the UK’s emissions challenges.
“While there is no one technological solution to the air quality challenge, it is also true to say there’s too much cost to electrify everything in terms of rewiring the network and power generation,” he told delegates.
“Dedicated gas trucks are coming to form part of the air quality landscape. Dedicated electric vehicles are coming, but HGVs have not been seen as part of that movement and aren’t going to happen anytime soon.”
“We believe our range extended truck is a game changer that will drive transformation in the UK,” said Blacklock.
Calor Gas, which operates a fleet of some 800 vehicles, said its range-extended truck uses LPG to drive the vehicle’s electric generator. This charges the battery supplying the motor with electricity.
Compliant with the latest emission requirements, Calor said its LPG range extender will deliver lower carbon emissions than petrol and provide the capability to increase a vehicle’s battery-only range up to 250 miles.
The technology also offers the opportunity for geofencing to cut emissions to zero when operating in city centres.
Calor added that BioLPG, which is due to be available in early 2018, offers “even more significant environmental benefits over existing range-extension technologies, such as diesel and petrol”.
Claimed savings are an 82% carbon saving compared with conventional diesel power, rising to 94% with BioLPG. Particulate matter is also virtually eliminated and there is a claimed 94% cut in NO2.