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NGVAmerica News Week in Review: June 8, 2015

  • 2015 North American NGV Conference & Expo in Full Swing!
  • State Legislative Update: Texas and Oklahoma
  • Emterra Launching CNG Refuse Fleet in British Columbia
  • British Columbia Transit Fleet Deploys New CNG Buses
  • Shell Opens LNG Fueling Lanes at Two Truck Stations
  • Texas City Celebrates Opening of Two CNG Stations
  • Ohio City Signs CNG Fueling Contract with Refuse Hauler
  • Tennessee Gas Association Hosts Statewide CNG Rally
  • First ‘Dragon’ Class LNG Vessel Featuring Wärtsilä Engine
  • Sempra LNG and Woodside Consider New LNG Facility in Texas


2015 North American NGV Conference & Expo
in Full Swing!

The 2015 North American NGV Conference & Expo at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado, on September 15–17 is on track to be the best NGV-centric event in the industry. Exhibit and sponsorship package sales are doing well and NGVAmerica encourages members, past participants and all other interested parties to continue to include the 2015 North American NGV Conference & Expo in their marketing plans for this year.  The floor plan is filling fast with quality exhibitors and all should act quickly to get the best possible space location by contacting Sebastien David toll free at 844.620.3494 or ngv@thecwcgroup.com.

A special thank you to all members supporting this endeavor and for showing attending conference registrants—including interested new fleet managers and fueling retailers—that the NGV industry is robust and advancing forward.  And given the current market conditions, NGVAmerica believes that bringing members, customers and the greater industry together for a focused dialogue is more important than ever.

NGVAmerica has issued a call for nominations for the 23rd Annual NGV Achievement Awards, which will be presented on Tuesday, September 15 at the 2015 North American NGV Conference & Expo. The awards recognize individuals and organizations for their outstanding contributions to the advancement of natural gas as a vehicular fuel.  They are awarded to stakeholders from all segments: industry equipment and service suppliers, policymakers, customers and clean air/clean transportation advocate-allies.  Note that only NGVAmerica members may make nominations; although, nominees are not required to be NGVAmerica members. Deadline: Nominations are due Friday, July 17.  Paperwork may be downloaded from the NGVAmerica website.

Also on Tuesday, NGVAmerica will introduce a repackaged version of the popular Market Development Peer Exchange (“Peer Exchange”) from 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon. Peer Exchange has been renamed Inside Track: Meet the Vendors! and will provide all conference registrants with a venue to hear rapid fire mini-briefings from NGVAmerica members. The format will allow approximately 20 members about 7 minutes to introduce—with or without PowerPoint presentations—their technologies and services to audience participants. This venue is likened to “speed dating,” serving as a fast-paced compilation of NGV-specific topics of interest with the desired outcome to educate and generate additional opportunities of increased foot traffic to members’ exhibition space on the show floor.  Inside Track: Meet the Vendors! is a first-come, first-served opportunity, and the limited time for this venue dictates that presenters must be exhibiting members. Reserve your spot now (a signed exhibition contract is required to receive a chance for this presentation opportunity).

Plenary and break-out sessions will be finalized this week and published shortly; many high-level industry leaders have been interviewed to determine the most compelling and relevant subject matter for educational content.  Energy is also being invested in creating marketing strategies to attract fleet management and fuel retailers, among other show attendee groups within the industry to impact attendance.  Please direct all inquiries to Tom Sheehan at 207.925.1136 or tsheehan@www.ngvamerica.org.

 

State Legislative Update: Texas and Oklahoma

In Texas, the state legislature has sent an appropriations measure to the governor that includes an increase of $40 million in FY 2016 and 2017 funding for the Texas Emission Reduction Program or TERP.  The bill includes an increase of more than $6 million for the Natural Gas Vehicle Grant Program and $2 million more for the Clean Triangle Program and another $2 million in additional funding for the Alternative Fueling Facilities Program.  The appropriations measure (HB 1) is expected to be approved by the Governor.  The legislature however did could not agree on language contained in HB 14 or SB 12 and therefore it did not pass provisions that would have expanded portions of the TERP Program to include additional counties in the state and it also did not agree to a new program that would have require state agencies to convert fleets to use natural gas.  The bills also would have included funding to help pay for state government NGV purchases.   Details on the funding levels established for the TERP program and comparisons with FY 2014 and 2015 are provided below.

Oklahoma has enacted legislation (SB 656) that provides funding no interest loans for local government entities so that they can purchase new NGVs or convert vehicles to operate on natural gas.  Nebraska also recently enacted the Clean Burning Motor Fuel Development Act (LB 581), a measure that provides a rebate for new or converted alternative fuel vehicles or refueling equipment installed at residential location for non-commercial purposes. The vehicle rebate is worth 50 percent of the cost up to maximum of $4,500 for new or converted vehicles and the fueling equipment rebate is capped at $2,500. The measure currently only provides $500,000 in funding so it is expected to have a limited but welcome impact.

Texas Emission Reduction Plan (TERP) (Acct. 5071)Per HB 1 Enrolled June 1, 2015
2014201520162017
TCEQ Administration$4,000,000$4,000,000$4,724,994$4,725,527
Regional Air Monitoring Program$3,000,000$3,000,000$3,000,000$3,000,000
Emission Reduction Incentive Grants$34,261,891$34,261,890$61,733,913$61,741,371
Texas Clean Fleet Program (minimum)$3,879,808$3,879,808$5,906,242$5,906,908
Texas Clean School Bus Program (maximum)$3,103,847$3,103,847$4,724,994$4,725,527
Texas Natural Gas Vehicle Grant Program (minimum)$12,415,386$12,415,386$18,899,975$18,902,106
Clean Transportation Triangle Program (maximum)$3,879,808$3,879,808$5,906,242$5,906,908
Alternative Fueling Facilities Program$3,879,808$3,879,808$5,906,242$5,906,908
New Technology Implementation Grants (maximum)$2,327,885$2,327,885$3,543,745$3,544,145
Health Effects Study (maximum)$200,000$200,000$200,000$200,000
Research$1,000,000$1,000,000$1,000,000$1,000,000
Energy Systems Laboratory Contract (maximum)$216,000$216,000$216,000$216,000
Drayage Truck Incentive Program (minimum)$1,551,923$1,551,923$2,362,497$2,362,763
*Light Duty Motor Vehicle Purchase or Lease Incentive (maximum)$3,879,808$3,879,808
TOTAL$77,596,164$77,596,163$118,124,844$118,138,163

Note: 2013–2014 Totals with some additions were $79.5 million

The LDV account would have had $5.9 million, but HB 14 was not approved—funding would have come from the Emission Reduction Incentive Grants line.

 

Emterra Launching CNG Refuse Fleet in British Columbia
May 28, 2015

Emterra Environmental is investing $5.25 million in establishing a CNG fueling station and launching a fleet of CNG waste and recycling collection trucks in Chilliwack, British Columbia. Emterra provides waste and recycling services for the City of Chilliwack.

The new fueling station will soon be open to other CNG fleet owners and operators and become the first CNG station in the Fraser Valley that will be open to the public.

This is the second of four CNG fuelling stations that Emterra is establishing in Canada. The first was opened in 2012 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The third Emterra CNG station will open this summer in the Capital Regional District in the City of Victoria, British Columbia, and the fourth in the City of Mississauga, Ontario, later in the year.

“We’re blazing the trail in building CNG fuelling stations for our own CNG fleets because we see the economic and environmental benefit of it,” said Emterra Founder and CEO Emmie Leung at a grand opening ceremony.

Emterra’s CNG fuelling station creates opportunities for BC’s fleet owners and operators to switch to a lower-cost, cleaner-burning CNG vehicles, helping to make BC businesses more competitive and sustainable.

Clean Energy was Emterra’s partner in building and operating the Chilliwack facility. Clean Energy Compression, formerly IMW Industries, is located in Chilliwack.

The CNG fuelling station in Chilliwack contributes to the BC Ministry of Natural Gas Development’s Natural Gas Strategy, including developing new markets for natural gas to increase the value of BC’s natural gas and promoting use of natural gas as a climate solution.

 

British Columbia Transit Fleet Deploys New CNG Buses

The City of Kamloops, British Columbia, has deployed 25 new CNG fueled transit buses after clearing inspections and the CNG fueling station is complete.

“The City’s strategy is to encourage alternative, sustainable methods of transportation and supportive infrastructure,” commented Kamloops Mayor Peter Milobar.  “These new buses will support this strategy by reducing the emission of harmful pollutants into our air shed.”

A CNG fuelling station located at the Kamloops Transit Centre has been completed at a cost of approximately $2.5 million.

The 25 CNG buses were purchased through New Flyer Industries in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The total cost of the buses is roughly $14.8 million.  To help offset the initial costs associated with the purchase of the new CNG buses, FortisBC will provide funding of up to $577,500. This funding represents 70 percent of the cost differential of CNG buses over diesel counterparts.

For more information on transit in Kamloops, visit www.bctransit.com/kamloops.

 

Shell Opens LNG Fueling Lanes at Two Truck Stations
June 4, 2015

Shell is now providing LNG at two additional TravelCenters of America (TA) truck fueling stations in Texas. These stations are located in San Antonio and Dallas and follow on the heels of the opening of Shell LNG fueling lanes in Baytown, Texas, as well as Lafayette, Louisiana, in March this year. The Baytown, San Antonio and Dallas stations are strategically located in the Texas Triangle, a region with heavy truck traffic. Stabilis Energy is the first customer and the anchor fleet fueling their LNG-powered trucks at the San Antonio site.

As customer demand grows in the US, Shell and TA plan to open additional truck fuelling lanes. “This is another step forward in providing LNG fuel supply to heavy-duty road customers in the U.S.,” said Shell’s Christian Buelow, Shell’s General Manager Downstream LNG Americas. “We expect the strengthening supply chain in North America to give customers reassurance that LNG is a viable fuel alternative to diesel today.”

Shell has an agreement with TA to develop a network of LNG fueling stations for heavy-duty road transport customers, with sites phased to customer demand. The first of these LNG fuelling stations was opened in May 2014 in Ontario, California.

 

Texas City Celebrates Opening of Two CNG Stations
June 2, 2015

The City of Rockport, Texas, has announced the opening of two CNG facilities. The first facility is a stand-alone fueling station for both commercial and personal-use CNG vehicles. It offers access 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and a point-of-sale program that accepts credit card payments.

The second facility is for the private use of Aransas County Independent School District (ACISD) and the City of Rockport. Two CNG buses are currently in use and two additional vehicles are in the process of being ordered. The City will receive a CNG pickup truck later this month for use by the City’s Public Works Department.

The City and ACISD entered into a mutual agreement for a CNG fueling station in 2014. The school district provided, via a lease agreement, the land for the stand-alone station and the ACISD facility. Both entities will slowly be converting their vehicle fleets to CNG.

Zeit Energy served as the City’s construction manager at risk. Design for the project was provided by TRC, a national engineering, consulting and construction management firm providing integrated services to the energy, environmental and infrastructure markets. Palacios Marine and Industrial was awarded the construction contract following the standard request for bids procedure. Total cost of the project was $1.8 million.

 

Ohio City Signs CNG Fueling Contract with Refuse Hauler

The Hamilton Department of Public Utilities, in Hamilton, Ohio, has signed a letter of intent with its first contract CNG customer at the recently opened city-owned public CNG Fueling Station. The City determined Rumpke, the area’s residential and commercial trash collector that also operates a fleet of CNG trucks, would be a good partner for contracting with the City on CNG purchases.

The City has a number of CNG vehicles in its current fleet of vehicles, and is planning to purchase or convert a number of additional CNG vehicles in the near future. However, in order to make the CNG fueling station truly viable, the City needed to bring in additional outside CNG vehicles, either through securing fleet operators or other private vehicles.

Based on negotiations, Rumpke will receive a discounted rate on its purchase of CNG at the Hamilton fueling station. This discount equals 10 percent to 25 percent off the standard CNG price, which is currently $1.99 per GGE, based upon the volume of CNG that Rumpke uses in a month.

Under the terms of the proposed agreement, Rumpke will be required to use a minimum of over 2,600 GGE per month. Additionally, the proposed agreement with Rumpke is for one year, with the option of the parties to extend beyond.

The station, which is now open to the public, is located adjacent to the Hamilton Municipal Garage property. The fueling station was jointly funded by the City and a Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) grant, awarded to the City by the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana (OKI) Regional Council of Governments.

 

Tennessee Gas Association Hosts Statewide CNG Rally

The Tennessee Gas Association (TGA) hosted the 2015 TGA CNG Across Tennessee Rally the week of May 18–22, with stops in: Memphis, Trenton, Nashville, Athens and Sevier County.  CNG across Tennessee showcases Tennessee’s CNG Highway.  This five stop tour visited public natural gas refueling stations beginning in Memphis and ending in Sevier County. The event serves as a vehicle to educate the public about the benefits of using natural gas as a vehicle fuel and its importance to our environment.

“Our public CNG infrastructure is one of our state’s best kept secrets,” says Lynette DiMeola, Executive Director Tennessee Gas Association.  “This statewide effort serves to promote this growing industry and inform the public that a natural gas vehicle, fleet or semi-truck can drive across the state of Tennessee refueling with domestic natural gas as vehicle fuel.

 

First ‘Dragon’ Class LNG Vessel Featuring Wärtsilä Engine

The first in a series of ‘Dragon’ class vessels ordered by Evergas, an owner and operator of seaborne petrochemical and liquid gas transport vessels, is being delivered from the Sinopacific Offshore & Engineering (SOE) shipyard in China. The vessel features a comprehensive Wärtsilä solutions package, including two Wärtsilä 50DF dual-fuel engines, Wärtsilä propulsion equipment including the gearbox, two Wärtsilä 20DF auxiliary generating sets, a Wärtsilä LNG fuel system and a Wärtsilä cargo handling system.

The ‘Dragon’ class ships are to be chartered by INEOS Europe for the transportation of ethane to Europe from the Mariner East project in the US. The carriers are purpose built for the transportation of ethane, although they can carry a wide range of petrochemical gases, including propane and LNG.

The Dragon class vessels are 591 ft. long and 87 ft. wide. They represent the largest ethane carriers in their class in the world.

 

Sempra LNG and Woodside Consider New LNG Facility in Texas
June 3, 2015

Sempra LNG announced it has executed a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with an affiliate of Woodside Petroleum to discuss and assess the potential development of Sempra LNG’s proposed Port Arthur liquefaction project in Port Arthur, Texas.

The proposed Port Arthur liquefaction project would be located at a site previously permitted for an LNG regasification terminal and would be designed to include two natural gas liquefaction trains with a total export capability of approximately 10 million metric tons per annum, or 1.4 billion cubic feet per day, as well as LNG storage tanks and marine facilities for LNG ship berthing and loading.

In March 2015, Sempra LNG’s affiliate, Port Arthur LNG, initiated the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission pre-filing review for the proposed natural gas liquefaction facility and filed its permit application with the U.S. Department of Energy for authorization to export LNG produced from the proposed project to all current and future Free Trade Agreement countries.

Any development of the project remains contingent upon completing required commercial agreements; acquiring all necessary permits and approvals; securing financing commitments and potential tax incentives; achieving other customary conditions; and making a final investment decision to proceed.