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New Member: Renewable Energy Group, Inc.

LSCFA is proud to call Renewable Energy Group one of our new members, we look forward to forging new paths for renewable fuels in central Texas together.

Renewable Energy Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: REGI) is a leading provider of cleaner, lower carbon intensity products and services.  We are an international producer of biomass-based diesel, a developer of renewable chemicals and are North America’s largest producer of advanced biofuel.  REG utilizes an integrated procurement, distribution, and logistics network to convert natural fats, oils, greases, and sugars into lower carbon intensity products.  With 14 active biorefineries, a feedstock processing facility, research and development capabilities and a diverse and growing intellectual property portfolio, REG is committed to being a long-term leader in bio-based fuel and chemicals. Visit regi.com for more information.

Air Central Texas Newsletter

Check out the news and updates coming out of Air Central Texas HERE.

Adsorbed Natural Gas Products, Inc. Commercializes the First ANSI NGV2 Certified On-Board Low Pressure ANG Technology Storage System for Light-duty Vehicles

Chester, NJ May 3, 2016 – Adsorbed Natural Gas Products, Inc. (ANGP) announced today that it has successfully installed the industry’s first ANSI NGV2 certified adsorbed natural gas (ANG) active storage system. The system, which ANGP calls its first generation (GEN 1) ANG System, is comprised of six activated carbon monolith-filled seamless aluminum cylinders, fully ANSI NGV2 certified for an operating pressure of 900 psig, and ANGP’s low-pressure fuel management system. The first system was successfully installed on ANGP’s 2014 Ford F-150 pick-up truck equipped with Ford’s CNG/LPG-ready 3.7 liter V6 bi-fuel engine for gasoline or natural gas operation.

“Today we have met the challenge of producing a fully ANSI NGV2-certified low-pressure ANG storage system for motor vehicles,” said Bob Bonelli, co-founder and CEO of ANGP. “Our GEN 1 system proves that low-pressure storage for natural gas vehicles (NGVs) is not only a possibility, but a commercial reality complying with the most demanding certification standards in the industry.”

Bonelli added, “Low pressure ANG technology has been the subject of credible research over the past three decades. It took the past four years of dedicated effort by ANGP and our manufacturing coalition of major corporations (Ingevity Corporation, Worthington Industries and Aspen Compressor), to develop a commercially viable ANG fuel system successfully passing the many strict tests comprising the ANSI NGV2 certification process.”

The ANGP GEN 1 ANG system includes several industry firsts:

  • ANSI NGV2 certification, conducted by tank manufacturer Worthington Industries, which allows for over-the-road use of the vehicle;
  • Seamless monolith-filled cylinders, containing Ingevity Corporation’s Nuchar® Fuelsorb™ activated carbon monoliths, developed and produced for ANGP. Worthington Industries and Ingevity Corporation worked closely to achieve the seamless closure of the ANGP ANG cylinder around the monoliths; and,
  • ANGP’s patent pending fuel extraction and pressurization system (FEPS™), which engages as tank pressure drops below 125 psig to ensure consistent fuel as the tank approaches empty. The FEPS™ is equipped with miniature compressor technology from Aspen Compressor, LLC.

This first production system is configured on the floor of the cargo box of the F-150. This system configuration allows for the full length and width of the cargo box to be utilized by installing a floor above the cylinders (ANGP’s truck is equipped with a clear floor above the system to allow for visual inspection of the configuration). Alternative configurations, that can be achieved by working with up-fitting companies and OEMs, include horizontal stacking in the front of the cargo box (similar to current CNG configurations) or “sunk” into a well below the cargo box of the truck to allow maximum depth to be utilized while leaving the length and width of the cargo box available for use.

“While we are extremely proud of this great milestone in NGV technology; the industry; and our company, we remain on schedule for the early 2017 release of our second generation (GEN 2) system – the ANGP conformable tank,” Bonelli said.

He added, “Our GEN 2 system will be developed through ANGP’s exclusive license with United Technologies Research Center to use its innovative Type IV conformable tank design. GEN 2 can be configured for optimal space utilization and will enable commercially viable application in the broad light duty vehicle market, including passenger cars and SUVs.”

Switching to Natural Gas? What Fleet Managers Should Know

By Wayne Snead of Texas Gas Service

If you’re a fleet manager considering switching to compressed natural gas (CNG), you may be asking yourself the following:

  1. Do I have the right type of fleet?
  2. What type of fueling station is required?
  3. How much will the project cost?
  4. What is the payback period?
  5. Where will I get the money?

A recent study by The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES), funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, may provide some answers (calculations based on 2014 fuel prices):

1. Whether your fleet is a good candidate depends on a number of factors including vehicle type, size of fleet, annual mileage per vehicle, travel patterns and vehicle life. C2ES found that tractor-trailers (weighing under 80,000 pounds since larger 15-litre engines aren’t available) offer the most opportunity because they consume a large amount of fuel (high annual mileage of more than 60,000 miles), have a low fuel economy per vehicle (5.8 miles per gallon), an annual turnover of 353,000 vehicles and an average lifespan of seven years. Larger fleets with short turnover times (due to shorter vehicle lifespans) may be better candidates. School buses also have potential.

2. There are several types of fueling stations and the best one for your fleet will depend on your required fueling time. If you need to use the vehicle right after filling, you need a fast-fill station. If your vehicles remain parked overnight between uses, a time-fill station is best. Keep in mind, the fuel dispensing hose is not compatible between the two types of stations.

3. Natural gas vehicles cost more to purchase: an additional $3,750 premium for a taxi to $90,000 for a Class 8 tractor-trailer fueled with liquefied natural gas. Adding new fueling infrastructure—which costs between $500,000 and $1,000,000 per station based on one fuel pump—increases upfront costs significantly. For tractor-trailers and school buses, infrastructure can add between $400,000 and $22 million to the project cost, depending on the size of the fleet and the vehicle miles traveled.

This additional cost may extend the payback period beyond the expected life of the equipment. Large fleets with high mileage may work the best. School bus fleets must have a very high annual mileage (20,000 or more per vehicle) and more than 50 vehicles in order to achieve a net cost savings when new infrastructure is required.

4. The price difference between diesel, gasoline and CNG (gallon equivalent) is the largest single factor affecting payback. Although the price difference has narrowed significantly in recent months, the U.S. Energy Information Administration maintains that gasoline and diesel prices will rebound and remain higher than natural gas prices for the next several decades.

CNG prices are also less volatile compared to those of diesel and gasoline, remaining within three cents of the average price over three years compared to 23 and 45 cents, respectively. Vehicles with long life expectancies have more time to accumulate fuel cost savings, which can result in a net cost savings over the life of the project.

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s Vehicle and Infrastructure Cash-Flow Evaluation tool calculates how net savings depend on fleet type, fuel price, equipment costs and operation and maintenance costs.

5. According to the DOE Alternative Fuel Data Center, 38 states and the District of Columbia offer grants, loans, rebate programs or tax incentives for natural gas conversions. If there are other natural gas fleets in your area, you can leverage existing fueling infrastructure or share new infrastructure, which will significantly reduce fueling station costs.

If financial incentives aren’t offered in your area, you may want to contract with an energy service company, which provides technical and financial assistance. In general, the cost savings must be great enough to cover the energy service company’s costs and provide the necessary benefit for the fleet owner. The higher the cost savings, the more services will be available.

Lower Emissions

CNG vehicles also have a positive impact on the environment. For instance, tractor-trailers can reduce their carbon dioxide emissions by nearly 365,000 pounds over the vehicle lifetime, assuming an annual mileage of 66,000. Argonne National Laboratory’s GREET tool provides life cycle analysis of greenhouse gas emissions of natural gas fuels and vehicle technologies.

Protec Fuel

This month we will be featuring our member Protec Fuel Management and all the great work that they do to help increase the use of renewables in the USA.

Protec Fuel was Founded in 1999, Protec Fuel Management, LLC is an ethanol fuel marketing, installation and risk management company dedicated to providing a unique turnkey ethanol solution to distributors, retailers and fleets across the nation. Protec supplies ethanol to or have built stations at over 300 retailers across the South, Southeast and Mid-Atlantic areas.

Protec is made up of experienced professionals with years of combined technical knowledge. Protec can sell and retail any blend of ethanol. Its customers range from convenience stores, to fleets such as the US Military and CPS Energy in San Antonio.

In Central Texas, Protec’s focus is centered around working with fleets and retail stations that are interested in providing ethanol stations with the USDA Biofuels Infrastructure Program grant.

If you are interested in utilizing the USDA Biofuels Infrastructure Program Grant please contact Amber Pearson right away (funds are being allocated now): amber@protecfuel.com. This program can pay for from half to all of a fleet’s infrastructure.

USDA Secretary Vilsack in Kissimmee to Make Biofuels Announcement

Protec Fuel is proud to welcome U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to Mid-State Energy’s Kissimmee Citgo E15 and E85 retail station today. The Secretary makes a major announcement on ethanol fuel investment to the tune of $16 million for the state alone.

At the first retail fueling station in Kissimmee, suburb of Orlando, Fla., selling E85 and E15 ethanol blends, Secretary Vilsack announces the states and amounts in which $100 million for ethanol infrastructure under the Biofuels Infrastructure Program (BIP) has been awarded. While E85 ethanol can be used in flex-fuel gasoline vehicles, E15 fuel can be used in 2001 and newer vehicles, and both have been proven to reduce emissions such as greenhouse gases, cost less than regular gas, and ethanol is a domestically produced, renewable fuel. The Citgo, 3297 S. John Young Pkwy., 407-932-4443, sells both, along with biodiesel for diesel engines, and traditional fuels.

“This major investment in renewable energy infrastructure will give Americans more options that not only will suit their pocketbooks, but also will reduce our country’s environmental impact and bolster our rural economy,” said Vilsack. “The Biofuel Infrastructure Partnership is one more example of how federal funds can be leveraged by state and private partners to deliver better and farther reaching outcomes for taxpayers. The volume and diverse geographic locations of partners willing to support this infrastructure demonstrate the demand across the country for lower cost, cleaner, American-made fuels. Consumers will begin to see more of these pumps in a matter of months.”

Protec Fuel, based in Boca Raton, Fla., has partnered to help manage the ethanol blends installation and provide fuel for the station’s new cleaner-burning fuels. “We are honored to host Secretary Vilsack and the USDA in making this national announcement because of their commitment to supporting the U.S. economy through ethanol blends,” said Steve Walk, Protec Fuel’s VP of Development. “Protec Fuel partners with retailers across the country in adding station value and business products by successfully implementing higher ethanol blended stations such as Mid-State Energy ‘s fueling station here.”

Kissimmee mayor Jim Swan, Tom Buis, CEO of Growth Energy, and Richard Childress Racing’s American Ethanol racecar are also on hand today.

Retail fuel stations and fleets are eligible for this grant. USDA estimates that the BIP grants will support nearly 5,000 pumps at over 1,400 fueling stations across the country; and that this investment will more than double the number of stations that offer intermediate blends of ethanol, mainly E15 fuel levels, nationwide.

Higher-octane E15, a blend of 15 percent ethanol and 85 percent gasoline, is the most widely tested fuel ever sold to consumers. The ethanol portion of these fuels is 100% U.S.-made and supports jobs and keeps our money in local communities. Ethanol burns cleaner in engines, which helps the performance level of the vehicle. It also can extend the life of the engine. Since 88-octane E15 can run in any 2001 or newer gasoline engine, that equates to 80% of vehicles in the U.S.

E85 gasoline fuel, 100+ octane blend, is an alternative fuel blend that can be used in over 18.5 million vehicles across the U.S. E85 is a blend of 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline. There are over 100 FFV models on the market today that can run on E85. Visit www.flexfinder.org to see if you have an FFV. Click here for further E85 station locations ( www.afdc.energy.gov/locator/stations ). This alternative reduces the nation’s dependency on foreign petroleum.

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