Volvo Trucks intensifying development of LNG trucks for heavy regional and long-haul transport operations
Volvo Trucks is taking the position that by replacing diesel with liquefied natural gas or biogas, CO2 emissions from heavy trucks can be drastically reduced. Volvo Trucks is intensifying its development of gas-powered trucks for heavy regional and long-haul operations.
Reducing climate-impacting emissions from heavy commercial traffic is a challenge that engages politicians and transport purchasers, haulage companies and vehicle manufacturers. In May the EU presented a regulation demanding declaration of CO2 figures from heavy vehicles as of 2019, with the aim of reducing CO2 emissions.
Many of our customers and their customers already work hard to reduce their environmental footprint. This regulation will drive the development of lower emissions, where we see a clear possibility for increasing LNG market shares as a vital part of the solution. Our vision is that trucks from Volvo will eventually have zero emissions, although the way of achieving that is not by one single solution but rather through several solutions in parallel.—Lars Mårtensson, Director Environment and Innovation at Volvo Trucks
Although a fossil fuel, natural gas can produce 20% lower CO2 emissions than diesel. If biogas is used instead, the climate impact can be cut by up to 100%.
While biogas is thus far only produced in limited quantities, the long-term availability of natural gas is excellent in a global perspective. This is an important condition for large-scale expansion, as is a competitive price, Volvo says. In many European countries, natural gas costs less than diesel. A strategy for expanding LNG infrastructure is also included in the European Commission’s and member states’ action packages for securing Europe’s long-term energy supply.
All told, this makes liquefied gas the best widely available climate alternative on the market for long and heavy transports. What is needed now is gas-powered trucks that can compete with diesel in terms of performance and fuel consumption, and continued expansion of LNG infrastructure. In both cases major progress has been achieved.—Lars Mårtensson