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    US NGVs to run on 80% RNG by 2030: NGVAmerica


Renewable natural gas is already more popular than conventional natural gas as a motor fuel in the US.

by: Joseph Murphy

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US NGVs to run on 80% RNG by 2030: NGVAmerica

Renewable natural gas (RNG) will account for 80% of the fuel used in US natural gas vehicles (NGVs) by 2030, the president of industry association NGVAmerica, Dan Gage, said on August 25.

Gage was testifying at a hearing on proposed changes to greenhouse gas emission standards for light-duty vehicles with a model year of 2023 or later. The Biden administration is looking to restore emissions standards to close to how they were before amendments made by Trump. Gage stressed that RNG should be recognised as a key zero-carbon solution. He estimated that the carbon intensity of bio-compressed natural gas in California's system was only 16.57 grams of CO2 equivalent /MJ, or less than any other motor fuel including renewable electricity.

RNG is now more popular than natural gas as a motor fuel, and accounts for 92% of NGV fuel in California. Nationwide, its share should reach 80% by 2030 and 100% by 2050, Gage said.

"NGVAmerica agrees that climate change is cumulative; the longer we wait, the harder it gets to solve,” Gage said. "There is no single perfect, affordable and immediate solution to addressing transportation related climate change emissions. Thus, all clean options must be advanced to make a collective difference…beginning today."

The president urged against rolling back some improvements made by the past administration that removed barriers to natural gas certification and incentivised increased production of NGVs through sales multipliers.

"These sales multiplier incentives should not be eliminated, but reinstalled and expanded, to advance every available, affordable, and scalable clean powertrain solution," Gage said. "Providing significant renewable natural gas vehicle incentives to automakers will allow for flexibility to meet the varied needs of fleets."

Proponents of NGVs often urge against looking only at tailpipe emissions to determine how clean fuels are, instead of the assessing emissions across the value chain.

"All emissions matter ... well to wheel and mine to mile," Gage said. "EPA’s regulations must be amended to ensure that manufacturers have greater reason to produce ultra-low-carbon motor vehicles that operate on biofuels, not just vehicles that have so-called zero tailpipe emissions."