FT Gasrec Gregory

Demand for biomethane to fuel commercial vehicles is booming according to Gasrec.

It has doubled sales of biomethane across its commercial vehicle refuelling network in the first quarter of 2021, compared with the same period in 2020, and is now supplying about seven times more biomethane to the road transport sector than at the start of 2019.

James Westcott, chief commercial officer at Gasrec, said: “Demand is growing by the day, as more operators transition to running on cleaner and lower cost biomethane. The net result is we are seeing some very big fleets ditching diesel altogether and only investing in gas trucks when replacing or adding assets.”

Looking ahead to the next 12 months, he added: “It’s a hugely exciting time and we’re working closely with end-user fleets and developers of new logistics parks to ensure we’re putting dedicated infrastructure where it’s needed to help operators scale fast. We’re at advanced planning and development stages on a number of new sites.”

While there has been a steady increase in demand for Bio-CNG (compressed natural gas), Bio-LNG (liquified natural gas) has seen much higher growth mainly due, according to Gasrec, to its suitability for long-haul work and the 6×2 tractor unit market.

Sales of Bio-LNG from Gasrec’s 24/7 flagship site at the Daventry International Rail Freight Terminal (DIRFT) grew by more than 250% in the past 12 months.

Westcott explained: “There is little doubt that right now biomethane offers the best route forward when it comes to cutting tailpipe emissions for long-haul operations and will continue to do so for a significant time yet.”

According to Gasrec, in comparison with Euro-6 diesel, a typical 6×2 truck operating on long-haul work and running on Bio-LNG emits around 90% less NO2 emissions, 99% less particulate matter and 95% less CO2. Gas trucks are also significantly quieter than those powered by diesel, cutting noise by around half.

Within the past 12 months Gasrec has invested £1m upgrading the DIRFT site – which has the capacity to refuel up to 700 trucks per day – and it has installed on-site refuelling stations for Reed Boardall at its Boroughbridge site, and for Gregory Distribution at its Cullumpton depot.