UPS now bets not on CNG, LNG, but RNG
UPS (United Parcel Service) is doing this for a reason – having used delivery vehicles running on alternative fuels and clean technologies for years, the company aims to surpass one billion "clean energy” miles of collective mileage by the end of 2017. Starting in May 2015, UPS will add RNG at its three refueling stations in California – in Sacramento, Los Angeles and Fresno. As the company estimates, 400 CNG-powered UPS vehicles in the state will use up to 1,5 billion gallon equivalents of RNG per year.
Before the agreement with Clean Energy Fuels was signed, UPS used RNG in the UK, where it powered some of its truck-tractors with this fuel under a partnership with Mercedes. Come to think of it, RNG may just be a fancy and innovative-sounding name for biomethane or biogas, sometimes also referred to as CBG (compressed biogas) or LBG (liquefied biogas). Perhaps RNG is produced in a different way than biogas, but UPS discloses no details concerning the technology and we suspect it's just a matter of naming. Still, thumbs up for the initiative as renewable methane is even greener and cleaner than fossil-sourced natural gas.
Today's RNG agreement will help mature the market for this promising alternative fuel. This commitment also positions UPS to use RNG in its extensive natural gas fleet which includes more than 2500 medium and heavy duty vehicles.
Harrison Clay, Clean Energy's renewables president
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