New study on CO2 emission abatement costs of gas mobility and other road transport options

NGVA Europe published its newest study: ‘CO2 Emission Abatement Costs of Gas Mobility and other Road Transport Options’ which had been commissioned to Frontier Economics.

May 7, 2021. The Natural & bio Gas Vehicle Association (NGVA Europe) published its newest study: ‘CO2 Emission Abatement Costs of Gas Mobility and other Road Transport Options’ which had been commissioned to Frontier Economics.

The study analyses and compares CO2 emissions, the economic costs, and the resulting emission abatement costs of key road transport vehicles, while also illustrating the potential contribution of gas mobility (gmobility) alongside other technologies.

The focus is on the near term (up to 2030) using two vehicle types as examples: passenger cars and trucks. Within each vehicle type, the study compares a range of low-carbon options, including gmobility to a fossil counterpart, using a comprehensive approach rather than focussing narrowly on tailpipe emissions.

The analysis demonstrates that gmobility is a readily available and attractive complement to the technology mix in transport in 2030 that will be required to effectively and efficiently migrate towards a net-zero carbon mobility sector in Europe. It will therefore be key to ensure that the regulatory framework allows for gmobility to contribute to emission reductions.

In 2030, some 1.6 million gas-fueled passenger vehicles could save 24 million tonnes of CO2 compared to a similar number of conventional gasoline vehicles over their lifetime at an additional system cost of 2.8 billion Euros. The same fleet of Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV) would cost 6 billion Euros.

For trucks, the 52,000 LNG trucks expected by 2030 would lead to a reduction of over 25.1 million tonnes of CO2 relative to a similar number of diesel trucks at an additional system cost of around 2.6 billion Euros.

The gas mobility (gmobility) related key results of the study are as follows:

Passenger vehicles: Gmobility, running on a mix of Compressed Biomethane (CBM) and Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), has similar total emissions to a BEV while vehicles running on pure Biomethane have even lower emissions than BEVs calculated on a combined Well-to-Wheel (WtW) and manufacturing emissions basis.

While a gas vehicle has lower vehicle manufacturing costs, higher biomethane production costs mean that a vehicle running on pure biomethane has a comparable overall cost to a BEV.

At the same time though, gmobility has lower carbon abatement costs than BEVs for all CNG and biomethane fuel mixes. Furthermore, gmobility has a lower range of estimated costs and emissions than BEVs, which reflects the greater certainty around CNG vehicles as a more mature technology when it comes to costs and emissions. Gmobility should therefore be regarded as the most efficient complement to BEVs in order to securely reach the 2030 CO2-targets.

Trucks: Conventional diesel and LNG trucks have similar overall emissions. Gmobility, using a mix of LNG and bio-LNG, has significant lower total emissions than Diesel-powered trucks.

Regarding the costs, the numbers illustrate that Liquefied Biomethane will be the most expensive in 2030, which will largely be driven by the costs associated with fuel production.

On the other hand, regarding abatement costs, Bio-LNG vehicles have a clear cost advantage. Both the pure bio-LNG and LNG/bio-LNG mix have similar costs when it comes to CO2 emission abatement; however, pure bio-LNG vehicles offer significantly higher levels of emissions savings.

Policy implications of the study: The regulatory framework must provide a level playing field and allow for gmobility to contribute to emissions reductions in the near term.

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