Thomas Zernechel, Head of Volkswagen Group Logistics, said: "Lower-emission trucks are a key element in our Green Logistics sustainability initiative. With yesterday's LNG Truck Day, we provided impetus for the use of trucks with alternative powertrains. However, we can only succeed with strong partners – a concerted effort will bring us onto the right track."
Volkswagen Group Logistics, Scania, the gas suppliers participating and 18 regional forwarders all gave their support to sustainable logistics. More than 100 Scania LNG trucks are to be made available to the Group's forwarders in the north of Germany. The ministry will provide forwarders with a support package for the purchase of trucks. Gas suppliers are to construct LNG refueling stations in the region.
To achieve further progress with the implementation of these projects, the participants met at LNG Truck Day in Wolfsburg. Reservations concerning the use of the new technology and other obstacles are to be eliminated and the expansion of the LNG refueling network in Germany is to be actively supported.
LNG is considerably more environmentally compatible than conventional fuels. Scania trucks with an LNG powertrain emit up to 20 percent less CO2 than comparable diesel engines. The use of regional and local biogas even reduces CO2 emissions by as much as 90 percent in addition to the improvement in the carbon dioxide balance, these powertrains emit some 95 percent less nitrogen oxides (NOx). Less particulate matter is produced during combustion and particulate emissions are virtually completely avoided (-95 percent). Compared with diesel-engined trucks, the noise levels produced by combustion are reduced by about 50 percent (-3 db).
Frank Bonaldo, spokesperson for the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, underlined the relevance of LNG powertrains: "Countries such as Spain, the Netherlands or France are in a significantly better position with regard to LNG supplies for road transport. Germany urgently needs to catch up in order to reach its greenhouse gas reduction targets by 2030: reductions of 55 percent across all consumption sectors and 40 percent in the traffic sector compared with 1990. This is why the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy and the Association "Zukunft Erdgas" support this commitment. The Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure has announced public support for manufacturers so that LNG trucks can be offered at competitive conditions."
Peter Hornig, Managing Director of Scania Germany and Austria, explains: "Currently, CNG (compressed natural gas) is the type of natural gas mainly used in the motor fuel sector but LNG (liquefied natural gas) is being used increasingly widely, especially in the long-distance segment. " Stefan Ziegert, product manager for alternative transport solutions with Scania, adds: "LNG is especially interesting as a fuel for long-distance trucks as technical progress allows a longer range per tankful and it offers the cleanest combustion of any fossil fuel. With today's LNG technology, a truck can travel up to 1,600 km."
This commitment to the use of LNG trucks is part of the Green Logistics initiative of Volkswagen Group Logistics. This is based on the "TOGETHER 2025" strategy under which the Volkswagen Group has committed itself to responsible management of the environment and the continuous reduction of emissions. The objective of the Green Logistics initiative is to ensure sustainable logistics within the Volkswagen Group. For this reason, material and vehicle transports are continually being optimized with a view to ideal capacity utilization and the avoidance of empty trips. The transfer of transport operations to more environmentally compatible means of transport plays a key role in emission reduction. In addition, the powertrain technologies of the current means of transport are being improved and new powertrain types are being reviewed to determine the application possibilities. For example, two LNG-powered ships are to carry Volkswagen Group vehicles between Europe and North America from 2019 onwards. The commitment to the use of LNG trucks by forwarders of the Volkswagen Group is another key step on the way to the use of alternative powertrains in logistics.