The jointly funded Stobart Group, BOC and Technology Strategy Board LNG refueling station in Appleton Thorn, near Warrington, Cheshire, is now fully on-stream.

Source: TransportEngineer.org.uk

Author: Brian Tinham

Part of the £23m programme being coordinated by the TSB to encourage road haulage operators to switch to low-carbon commercial vehicles, the new LNG refuelling station is already enabling Eddie Stobart to operate 20 new dual-fuel Volvo tractor units, using Clean Air Power conversion technology, from the site, which is also open to other LNG commercial vehicle fleet operators. 

Visiting the new refuelling station, Jon Horsley, the TSB's lead technologist, low carbon vehicles, said: "The Technology Strategy Board is committed to supporting the introduction of low-carbon vehicles to the logistics industry, which ... is crucial to the UK economy. I am delighted that [we] have been able to help support BOC and Stobart launch this new LNG facility." 
The refuelling station forms part of the TSB's match-funded project to track both the usage of LNG and the reduction in CO2 emissions. 

It is based on innovative 'zero loss' refuelling technology, developed by BOC (part of the Linde Group) to eliminate environmentally damaging methane losses during refuelling. It uses cryogenic cooling to 'temperature-condition' the fuel just prior to dispensing, which prevents leaks. "BOC's partnership with Stobart in this project is proof of our long-term commitment to play an active part in the transition to low-carbon transport," commented Mark Lowe LNG business manager for BOC. 
Eddie Stobart general manager for fleet compliance Phil Spittle added: "The transition from diesel to dual-fuel technology has been extremely smooth and has allowed us to help stimulate innovation in the logistics sector. 
"The use of dual-fuel vehicles is an exciting development and will support the increasing need for Eddie Stobart and its customers to reduce their carbon footprint." 
Dual fuel allows natural gas to be used in conjunction with diesel, reducing the total consumption of diesel and cutting CO2 emissions. LNG typically accounts for up to 60% of total fuel consumption for a dual-fuel modified vehicle. 
Diesel produces around 2.6 kg of CO2 for every litre burned, whereas LNG when used with diesel in a dual fuel vehicle typically reduces CO2 emissions by 10—14%.