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NGVAmerica News Week in Review: September 8, 2015

  • 2015 North American NGV Conference & Expo One Week Away!
  • Westport and Fuel Systems Solutions Sign Merger Agreement
  • American Natural Gas Completes CNG Facility for Tops Friendly Markets
  • New York Metro Begins Construction on Natural Gas Fueling Station
  • Piedmont Natural Gas Opens CNG Station at South Carolina Convenience Store
  • TruStar Energy Opens Company Branded Station in Houston
  • VNG Adds CNG Fueling At New Circle K Location in Houston
  • MHI Receives Order for High-Pressure Gas Supply System for Marine Engines
  • Japan’s First LNG Tugboat Completed for NYK Line

 

2015 North American NGV Conference & Expo One Week Away!

September 8, 2015

The 2015 North American NGV Conference & Expo at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado, on September 15–17 is only one week away.

The North American NGV Conference and Expo is the largest NGV-centric event in North America, and show registrations are on track to be even higher this year than last year.  Exhibit and sponsorship package sales are doing well and NGVAmerica encourages members, past participants, and all other interested parties to continue to include this show in their marketing plans for this year.  A special thank you to all members supporting this endeavor and for demonstrating to attending conference registrants—including interested new fleet managers and fueling retailers—that the NGV industry is vibrant.  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.

Have you registered yet?  The opening day includes the Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, in addition to industry heavyweights and advocates including Andrew Littlefair (Clean Energy), David McCurdy (AGA), Marty Durbin (ANGA), Chip Rimer (Noble Energy), General Michael Hagee (Retired – US Marine Corps), Mike Whitlatch (UPS) and Matt Godlewski (NGVAmerica).  The plenary is preceded by NGVAmerica’s annual board & members’ meeting in the morning which is followed by the 23rd Annual NGV Achievement Awards presented during lunch and includes guest speaker Sarah Charbonnet Landry (COGA). Please view the frequently updated conference schedule for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday to see breakout session topics & speakers, social events, expo hall hours, etc.

Make your reservations now as the conference is almost here. Please note that members get substantial discounts; for these special price links, contact CWC at ngv@thecwcgroup.com or Tom Sheehan at tsheehan@www.ngvamerica.org.

 

Westport and Fuel Systems Solutions Sign Merger Agreement

September 1, 2015

Westport Innovations and Fuel Systems Solutions announced that the companies have entered into a merger agreement to create a premier alternative fuel vehicle and engine company.  The combined company will benefit from complementary product solutions, and a fortified global footprint, with efficient operations and a core focus in developing next generation technology. The transaction, which has been unanimously approved by the companies’ respective board of directors, will result in a combined equity value of $351 million.

The merger combines 17 brands in the automotive and industrial space and will allow customers and stakeholders to benefit from the consolidation of technologies, and the expansion of product portfolios, OEM relationships, and global distribution networks. The new entity will conduct business in more than 70 countries, represent a combined 100 years of experience, with a new business unit called Fuel Systems Automotive and Industrial Group.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals, including expiration or termination of the applicable waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act and other customary closing conditions.  The transaction is also subject to the required approval of both Fuel Systems and Westport’s shareholders. Subject to the satisfaction of closing conditions and receipt of required approvals, the companies anticipate closing the transaction in the 4th quarter of 2015.  Westport and Fuel Systems will operate as separate companies until that time.

“The merger of these two organizations will provide greater breadth of alternative fuel systems solutions as products and development engineering to OEM partners globally,” said David Demers, CEO of Westport.  “This transaction marks a milestone in our strategic plans, whereby Westport will realize increased sales and significant cost efficiency opportunities while continuing to focus on the development, validation and launch of its proprietary Westport HPDI 2.0 and enhanced spark ignition technology.”

Traditionally, Westport has focused the majority of its technological development and commercialization efforts in the heavy-duty and high horsepower arena, while Fuel Systems has significant experience and focus in the light- and medium-duty products for automotive and industrial applications. The complementary industry expertise provides a compelling rationale for the merger, as the combined company’s product development efforts will span passenger car to heavy-duty trucks to locomotives and marine applications to stationary power.

 

American Natural Gas Completes CNG Facility for Tops Friendly Markets

September 3, 2015

American Natural Gas (ANG) has announced the completion of a new CNG facility at the Tops Friendly Markets distribution center in Lancaster, New York. The new facility will fuel Tops’ new fleet of 55 CNG tractors provided by Ryder.

ANG was selected through an extensive RFP process to be Tops’ provider based on its expertise in designing customized, cold weather-reliable systems. These systems feature two points of temperature compensation and Cobey Energy compressors, which ANG is the exclusive distributor of.

Twin 400 horsepower compressors, with a combined output of approximately 2,400 SCFM (17 GGE/minute), will meet the high-flow needed for the narrow time windows Tops’ class 8 tractors have to fuel up. Tops is expected to use a minimum of 1.2 million DGEs of CNG per year.

This progressive move is another effort by Tops to reduce its overall carbon footprint. The use of CNG is expected to help Tops reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, run quieter engines, and conserve over 1.2 million gallons of diesel fuel each year. The switch to CNG is also expected to reduce Tops’ fuel costs by 50 percent.

“At Tops Friendly Markets, our priorities are to have a reliable fleet of well-maintained vehicles to ensure our stores receive deliveries on time,” said Ron Ferri, Senior Vice President of Distribution and Logistics at Tops. “With Ryder’s natural gas vehicles, and the ANG fueling station, we have the confidence that we can get the service and performance we need from our new natural gas fleet.”

 

New York Metro Begins Construction on Natural Gas Fueling Station

August 31, 2015

The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority (NFTA) announced that Metro, in conjunction with Trillium CNG, has begun construction on a high capacity fast fill CNG fueling station at Metro’s Frontier Bus Garage in New York.

The $5.9 million facility will encompass one and a half acres and feature two 250-hp compressors, producing 700 standard cubic feet per minute that will serve four fuel dispensers. A twin tower dryer, control building, electric motor and control distribution wiring and control system are also part of the project. The functionality of the station will more than cover Metro’s needs for the immediate future, but the facility can be expanded to meet future demands.

“This is an exciting project for the future development of Metro services, as we embark down the road of providing high-end, environmentally efficient CNG buses for our customers in the Buffalo Niagara region,” said Thomas George, NFTA director of public transit.

Metro has ordered 44 full-size buses from Nova Bus that will run on CNG. The first 20 are due later this year, and will begin transporting passengers at that time, with the remainder to follow in 2016. These new buses will replace the oldest diesel buses currently in use. Metro has also ordered 10 CNG paratransit vans from Shepard Brothers, which will be used to transport customers with special needs. The PAL vans will begin service this fall. NFTA received $575,112 in funding from the Federal Transit Administration.

For more information, click here.

 

Piedmont Natural Gas Opens CNG Station at South Carolina Convenience Store

September 3, 2015

Piedmont Natural Gas and Spinx convenience stores celebrated the opening of Anderson, South Carolina’s, first public CNG refueling station at Highway 28. The station is Piedmont’s third public refueling facility in South Carolina and its first station located at an existing convenience store.

Rep. Jeff Duncan, who represents South Carolina’s 3rd Congressional District, joined executives from Piedmont Natural Gas and Spinx to mark the occasion. The event featured refueling demonstrations with several types of vehicles that will use the station, including passenger and commercial fleet vehicles.

With the opening of the Anderson station, Piedmont now operates 10 public CNG refueling stations throughout North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. Piedmont also is working with corporate fleet owners and municipalities to install dedicated CNG refueling facilities at their locations. In addition, Piedmont has converted approximately one-third of its own corporate fleet to vehicles that run on CNG.

 

TruStar Energy Opens Company Branded Station in Houston

August 31, 2015

TruStar Energy has opened a company-branded public CNG fueling station in Houston, Texas. The new Houston TruStar Energy CNG station has two traffic lanes and two fast-fill fueling pumps, providing access for commercial vehicles and private CNG-powered consumer vehicles. The station is supplied by natural gas from Apache Corporation and accepts commercial fuel cards such as Comdata or Fuelman as well as all major credit cards.

TruStar Energy currently is constructing dozens of CNG stations across the country, and the company has embarked on a strategy to open dozens of company-branded public CNG stations along high-traffic U.S. corridors over the next several years. TruStar Energy opened its first company-branded public fueling station in Orlando in July, a second station in Tulsa, Oklahoma, earlier this month and now adds Houston to that growing list.

“We have seen historical growth in Texas’ natural gas industry over the past decade, and natural gas engine fuel is increasingly growing as a domestic market for this abundant resource,” said David Porter, Chairman of the Texas Railroad Commission—the state’s chief energy agency. Recent data from the Texas Comptroller’s office shows that Texas fleet operators are purchasing natural gas in record numbers—sale of the fuel has increased 78 percent over FY 2014.

 

VNG Adds CNG Fueling At New Circle K Location in Houston

September 2, 2015

VNG.Co announced the continued expansion of its Texas CNG fueling network with the opening of a CNG fueling station at a new Circle K convenience store in Houston, Texas. To mark the occasion, VNG will offer CNG for a limited-time promotional price of 99 cents per GGE at the new location.

VNG’s newest CNG fueling facility is part of a multi-city public access fueling station development program in major U.S. markets to provide a convenient, safe and familiar CNG fueling experience for drivers of light duty vehicles.

The station construction project was funded in part by the State of Texas through an Alternative Fueling Facilities Program Grant from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ).

 

MHI Receives Order for High-Pressure Gas Supply System for Marine Engines

August 31, 2015

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has received an order from Hitachi Zosen Corporation for a high-pressure gas supply system enabling use of natural gas as fuel in marine engines. In lieu of conventional heavy oil, the system supplies LNG, injected under high pressure, to the engine.

Delivery of the system is scheduled for the second half of 2016, for installation at Hitachi Zosen’s Ariake Works in Nagasu-machi, Kumamoto Prefecture. After use in gas fueled demonstration testing of a marine diesel test engine, Hitachi Zosen will use the system to provide gas fuel for the marine diesel engines that the company manufactures. The order is the second for this system received by MHI, as well as the first system delivered to Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co.

With the new system, LNG is pressurized and delivered by liquid pump. The system features a compact configuration and low power consumption. The adoption of a hydraulic driven pump system eliminates the need for a speed reduction mechanism, facilitates variable speed adjustment, and also enables installation in ships where space is limited.

 

Japan’s First LNG Tugboat Completed for NYK Line

September 2, 2015

The building of Japan’s first LNG-fueled tugboat was completed for Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK Line) by Keihin Dock Co.’s Oppama plant on August 31. The vessel, which is named Sakigake (Presto), will be used to verify the effectiveness of LNG as a marine fuel.

The ship is chartered to the Wing Maritime Service Corporation and will engage in work mainly in Yokohama and Kawasaki Ports. It is equipped with dual-fuel engines that can use either heavy marine oil or LNG as fuel. NYK says it will meet all requirements of a tugboat while delivering superior environmental performance.

Tokyo Gas refueling Shikage LNG bunkering LNG supply to the ship is done from the docks of Yokohama by the “Truck to Ship” method, with fuel supplied by Tokyo Gas Co. The first truck to ship refueling in Japan was successfully completed in July this year when the vessel was commissioned.

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