Driving down fossil fuel consumption even more
An additional way of reducing your CO2 emissions as a transport company, next to driving down fuel consumption, is by considering using alternative fuels. Some of the routes we’re following closely and testing are Liquified Natural Gas (LNG), Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) and Hydrogen.
Firstly, we have considered using LNG trucks for our double-shifted Dutch trucks. These trucks depart in the morning and return in the (early) evening, to then depart again with a different driver. The planned routes of both drivers are rather limited in distance to enable the two-shifted set-up. LNG trucks, that have a smaller range (about 900 km), could fit such a set-up perfectly. However, they are expected to lead to a drop in CO2 emissions of only about 10% (versus up to 90% for bio-LNG). According to published test results, this drop is similar to the one you achieve by using the latest Euro 6 engines, which we currently already do. Bio-LNG, on the other hand, is more interesting in terms of CO2 emissions but has a very limited availability. Combining this with its restricted range, made us decide not to go for this route.
According to Joep Everts (General Manager Trucking): “HVO is the right way forward!” HVO is a renewable diesel fuel of premium quality that’s the result of hydrotreatment of vegetable oils or animal fats. Its chemical structure is highly similar to regular diesel which makes it suitable for all euro 6 diesel engines. It can lead to a reduction in CO2 emissions of more than 90% (for the 100% HVO variant) without affecting the range of trucks (which lies between 3,750 and 5,000 km). It can furthermore be implemented immediately for transport flows where HVO is available (although there is still room for improvement in terms of availability)!
Finally, it’s highly interesting to follow the evolution of hydrogen. Hydrogen power is often seen as one of the cleanest types of power as only heated water vapour is emitted. The challenge here is to derive hydrogen from renewables instead of from fossil fuels. And, since there’s still a shortage of renewables… Nevertheless, we continue to look into its potential. In that context, we’re also partnering up with “WaterstofNet”. This organisation, focussing on Flanders and the Netherlands, develops and realises sustainable hydrogen projects and roadmaps.