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Using natural gas fuel with other methods could help road freight and shipping industries meet targets, says new Imperial College London white paper.
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) - the United Nations' organisation for shipping—seeks to at least halve greenhouse gas emissions from ships by 2050 compared to 2008 levels. The road freight industry, which includes goods transport via trucks, is expected to work towards similar carbon reductions.
Distance - Ships - Trucks - Fuel - Oil
Long distance ships and trucks currently use heavy fuel oil and diesel, which emit greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide (CO2) that contributes to global warming. They also emit air pollutants like nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulphur oxides (SOx), and particulates which contribute to air pollution and harm human health.
In 2015 for example, road freight – which includes long haul trucks – contributed seven per cent of global CO2 emissions, and ships contributed up to 2.5 per cent. However, reducing or eliminating carbon emissions from long haul vehicles and ships has proven difficult, with advanced battery electric or hydrogen fuel cell systems more expensive and potentially limited in the range they can deliver.
Paper - Academics - Imperial - Sustainable - Gas
This new white paper, penned by academics at Imperial's Sustainable Gas Institute, examines the potential benefits of using natural gas for ship and truck fuel. It looks at how the change could affect greenhouse gas emissions, air pollution, and cost to industry.
The paper was co-written with academics at Imperial's Centre for Transport Studies, and the University of British Columbia's Clean Energy Research Centre.
Gas - Vehicles - Ships - Carbon - Diesel
Using natural gas to fuel vehicles and ships releases less carbon than diesel. However the report found that some natural gases, like methane, leak as they move through the supply chain, which significantly reduces the benefit of switching fuel.
The report also questions the value of using natural gas in trucks. In recent years, regulations for trucks has improved their energy efficiency to...
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