Strategy Details Are Released at ACT Expo 2016 in Long Beach:
‘A Clear, Cost-Effective Strategy to Achieve Our Air Quality Goals’
As Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus Outlines Near Zero Purchase Plans
Heavy duty vehicles with well-to-wheel emissions levels approaching nil are possible today given the combination of new “Near Zero” engine technology from Cummins Westport and the use of RNG – renewable natural gas.
The combination promises to solve the “black box” conundrum – finding the technologies that will allow ambitious California and federal, and indeed global clean air and climate change goals to be met in an economically acceptable manner, Gladstein, Neandross & Associates president Cliff Gladstein said in kicking off the special Game Changer session at ACT Expo 2016 in Long Beach last week.
“We now have a clear, cost-effective strategy to achieve our air quality goals and climate-change objectives,” he said.
‘It’s Here Today’
GNA (the organizer of ACT Expo) prepared the 192-page Game Changer white paper, which was released last week. The document was commissioned by the South Coast Air Quality Management District and private-sector sponsors including the Southern California Gas and Pacific Gas and Electric utilities, the California Natural Gas Vehicle Partnership, the American Gas Association, Agility Fuel Systems and Clean Energy Fuels.
“Why wait? Why dream when we can act now?” asked SoCalGas CEO Dennis Arriola in his ACT Expo keynote address on Thursday.
“It’s here today and it’s on a fast track to production and adoption.”
‘Transformative Sustainability Solution’
GNA describes the one-two technological punch as “the transformative sustainability solution that has made zero emission equivalent vehicle operations possible for the heavy-duty transportation sector, starting with heavy-duty vocational applications like refuse, transit, municipal, and urban delivery and then expanding to over-the-road trucking.”
The near-zero engine, with California Air Resources Board-certified nitrogen oxide emissions at just 0.02 grams per brake-horsepower – 90% below 2010 U.S. EPA requirements – was introduced this past autumn by Cummins Westport (F&F, October 6). The technology is first being applied to the 8.9-liter ISL G, which powers thousands of vehicles including refuse trucks and transit buses.
Big Blue Has Ordered the NZ
Cummins Westport commenced production of the ISL G NZ last month, and plans to extend the technology both to its 11.9-liter ISX12 G (in 2018) and to the still developmental 6.7-liter ISB6.7 G – which was itself launched at ACT Expo 2015 in Dallas one year ago.
Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus, which has already converted to RNG from Clean Energy Fuels for its fleet of approximately 200 vehicles, plans to acquire 25 new ISL G NZ-powered buses in the coming year, to re-power an additional 30 existing vehicles with the new engine in 2018, and to subsequently buy 50 further new ones.
By taking advantage of California LCFS and federal RIN credits, the agency expects to save some $750,000 in fuel costs, Santa Monica Big Blue Bus maintenance officer Getty Modica said in Long Beach.
‘We Keep Coming Home to Natural Gas’
On the refuse side, “We’ve tried other technologies, we will continue to try other technologies, but we keep coming home to natural gas every time,” said Marty Tufte of Waste Management.
Also giving fleet perspectives were Duane Lippincott, senior project manager for corporate automotive engineering with UPS, and Oliver Cruz, fuel operations program officer with the City of Long Beach.
Other speakers at last week’s Game Changer session included Harrison Clay of Clean Energy Renewable Fuels, Matt Miyasato of SCAQMD, and GNA senior VP Jon Leonard, who summed up the program at at ACT Expo 2016 general session on Thursday as well.
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Source: Fleets & Fuels at ACT Expo 2016 in Long Beach, Calif.