How Low Can Propane Emissions Go?
As the number of commercial trucks, school and transit buses that operate on propane autogas continues to increase, our industry continues to innovate and create new methods to further reduce the emissions profile of this very popular transportation fuel. A renewable option for propane is a requirement for this energy source to remain viable for decades to come.
Renewable propane is a non-fossil fuel produced from 100% renewable raw materials, such as beef fats, vegetable oils, grease residue and other biomass feedstocks that are inexpensive and abundant. Sometimes referred to as “biopropane,” this clean and renewable energy source has the same benefits of conventional propane autogas.
Both types of propane reduce emissions, cut costs and provide fleets with the same vehicle performance and reliability. And, simply put, the chemical structure and physical properties of renewable and conventional propane are the same — they just come from different sources.
Back in 2018, we were the first company to develop and certify a 0.02g NOx propane engine that could operate on renewable propane to help our clients reach near-zero emissions levels, reduce greenhouse gases and meet growing demand for cleaner products.
Today, there’s growing interest in renewable propane due to more availability. Already on the West Coast, U-Haul purchased its first million gallons of renewable propane last year and recently added another million gallons of renewable propane to sell at its California stores. On the East Coast, the Commonwealth of Virginia received its first gallons of renewable propane to fuel police vehicles and buses in Petersburg. According to the Propane Education & Research Council, these propane vehicles operating on renewable propane have a lower lifetime carbon footprint than electric vehicles charged using the electric grid in Virginia.
PERC has shared other data about the merits of renewable propane. For example, the council points out that at the point of combustion, renewable propane is carbon neutral, meaning no new carbon is added to the atmosphere when renewable propane is burned. The council is also testing renewable propane, including blends with conventional propane and standard development. It has been informing OEMs of potential engine use and creating awareness of the fuel for producer, seller, transporter and end-user.
The power and reliability of domestically produced propane is helping the nation lead a clean transportation revolution. Renewable propane adds to our nation’s energy portfolio and expands propane as an even more important energy source. Give us a call at 800.59.ROUSH to learn more.
Enjoy the warm days and cool nights of Fall!