Albeit being a fossil fuel, LNG still has a better environmental performance then the conventional fuels for trucks (diesel), inland barges (gasoil/fuel oil) and sea-going ships (heavy fuel oil). Typical air quality related emissions, greenhouse gasses emissions and noise emission levels all are lower compared to diesel, and certainly compared to fuel oils:
- Well to Wheel (propellor) greenhouse gas reduction 10 – 15%
- NOx and SOx reductions > 80% Source: TNO Report 2014 R11668
- Fine Particle emission reductions > 90% LNG for trucks and ships (Feb 2015)
A further improvement of the above numbers in the future can be realized through introduction of Bio-LNG, produced from green gas. Important also that in case of a spill of LNG on water or land, no remediation is required because it evaporates directly and dissipates quickly in the atmosphere.
Note that today no emission free technology exists for the propulsion of ships and large trucks. Electricity is just starting to drive passenger cars but it still is very difficult to carry enough energy for a reasonable distance. For trucks and ships E-powering is still decades away if ever but LNG can be introduced today already starting directly to reduce environmental emissions.
Gas by now is more abundant then oil and although todays’ market prices are in some turmoil as a result of many international developments, it is expected that over time a gas based fuel can and will be competitive. Thus creating a cost advantage for the end users compared to the usage of traditional fuels.
LNG has been used for decades as fuel in stationary systems, it has been stored and transported all over the globe and carries today an excellent safety record. LNG has one important safety caracteristic: vapor clouds will only ignate at temperatures of 538°C whereas conventional fuels will already ignite at temperatures which are hundreds of degrees lower.