June 19, 2021. Liquefied natural gas (LNG) can reduce emissions in heavy-duty transport, according to Holger Matzen, Head of Business Development Logistics at Spedition Voigt Logistik in Neumünster. “LNG emits less carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide, sulfur compounds and particulate matter compared to diesel. That makes it a good bridge technology until we have even better solutions e.g., hydrogen or alternative fuels.” Diesel lorries are also banned from many inner cities.
Until recently, Schleswig-Holstein had no LNG filling stations whatsoever. Shell opened the first public LNG filling station in Georgswerder in 2018 and initially, it was unclear whether demand could be generated in the region: “We knew that we needed at least 30 vehicles per day for a filling station,” said Matzen, who is also Chairman of the Board of the Logistics Initiative Schleswig-Holstein. Regular users were needed initially. Then a company from south Denmark was found that had its own large fleet. “As part of the Future Fuels Cluster Neumünster, which promotes alternative drive technologies in logistics, we finally gained the Berlin-based BarMalGas as operator,” he added.
The LNG refuelling station on the KBK Kies Beton Krebs site near the A7 motorway began operating in late March after Alternoil opened a filling station in Reinfeld near Lübeck in January. The station is the fifth in Novatek’s network and is easily reached by traffic heading to Lübeck and Berlin and from the A7’s north-south axis. “It’s right on our doorstep, so it’s perfect,” Matzen said. Voigt Logistik recently added two LNG trucks to its fleet of 120. “We wanted to test that and in technical terms, it clearly works.” Two vehicles can be refilled simultaneously at the new station. The drivers are proud to drive the more environment-friendly LNG lorries, for which they have been specially trained. And the technology at the filling station is far better than at older ones.
“LNG is predestined for clocked line hauls because of its range of about 1,000 kilometres, which amounts to 10 per cent less fuel consumption than diesel,” said Matzen. The more filling stations there are, the more attractive the fuel becomes. the expansion of LNG filling stations in Germany is gaining momentum, according to the LNG Market Radar published by Team Consult in January. Plans are being laid for another 45 filling stations across Germany. Last December 2020, 43 filling stations were in operation nationwide.