Photo: Illustration purposes only (Image courtesy of Alexela)

Estonia’s Alexela sets sights on first LNG refueling station

Estonian energy company Alexela unveiled plans to open a liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueling station in Jüri, first of its kind in the Baltic region.

LNG is more and more used as a fuel for heavy goods vehicles, and is gaining traction with the air emission limits, which until now were applied only to passenger cars, will according to the proposal of the European Commission on May 17, be introduced for the long-haul vehicles.

In addition, Europe has set a goal to link cost of tolls with air emissions. All these steps are related to an ambitious plan of shifting the whole transport sector to cars with zero and low CO2 emission, Alexela said in a statement.

“Nowadays our major problem is climate warming caused by greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere by combustion of fossil fuels. The transport sector accounts for 25 percent of Europe’s greenhouse gas emissions and is a major source of air pollution in the cities,” said Alan Vaht, member of the board of Alexela group.

Compared to the year of 1970, the CO2 emissions emitted by the transport sector have more than doubled. To improve the situation, the European Union has set a target of reducing CO2 emissions in the transport sector by at least 60 percent by 2050 compared to 1990.

“The directive of the European Union provides the need for the development of natural gas (CNG and LNG), electric chargers and hydrogen infrastructure. When electricity and CNG autogas are more suitable for passenger cars, liquified natural gas is intended for use in the transport sector,” Vaht said.

By the end of 2018, one LNG fuel station will be added to Alexela’s network, while several others are considered to be built in the future.

However, Alexela says the development of the refueling opportunities has to go in hand with the rise in numbers of vehicles using LNG as fuel.

“Every freight company should consider acquiring an LNG vehicle, we plan to acquire three Scania vehicles that use LNG that will replace vehicles with older diesel engines,” concluded Vaht.

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