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Why LNG?

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Does LNG as transport fuel also contribute to Dutch climate objectives?

Using LNG instead of oil-based fuel immediately reduces emissions. But it is still a fossil fuel. In time, fossil LNG can be replaced by LNG from biomass that comes from organic residual flows. Switching  to LNG is therefore in line with the transition to a completely sustainable energy supply. In the meantime, LNG as transport fuel is a cleaner and more affordable alternative to diesel and fuel oil.

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What is the impact of LNG on the environment?

LNG is liquefied natural gas; it is therefore, like natural gas from the gas network, the cleanest fossil fuel available. When using LNG as fuel in small-scale applications, such as transport or for isolated  industry, less CO2 is therefore emitted than with oil products, virtually no nitrogen and fine dust, and it is a completely sulphur-free fuel. It is thus an affordable and cleaner alternative to oil products.

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How much energy does it take to liquefy natural gas? In other words: how many cubic metres of natural gas does it take to convert one hundred cubic metres of natural gas into LNG?

Liquefying natural gas is a question of extreme cooling, to at least -160? C. That takes about 10% of the energy of the natural gas you are liquefying. So, to liquefy 100 m3 of natural gas, you need about 10 m3 of natural gas. You take this natural gas directly from the source, which is economical in terms of costs.

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How many cubic metres of natural gas does it take to convert one hundred cubic metres of natural gas into LNG?

Liquefying natural gas is a question of extreme cooling, to at least -160? C. That takes about 10% of the energy of the natural gas you are liquefying. So, to liquefy 100 m3 natural gas. You take this natural gas directly from the source, which is economical in terms of costs. of natural gas, you need about 10 m3

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How much energy does it take to keep LNG liquid?

Nothing. Once it is liquid, you only need to keep it well insulated. You do not need to cool it further. 

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How much energy does it take to convert LNG back into a gas for use in the engine of a boat or truck?

It does not take any extra energy. The LNG is converted back into a gas in a heat exchanger. Such a heat exchanger is actually a heating radiator in reverse: the LNG is passed through the radiator (heat exchanger) and, by increasing the surface area, it absorbs heat from the surrounding air via the metal.

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How much energy does it take to convert LNG back into a gas so that it can be fed back into the gas network?

That does not take any extra energy at Gate terminal. The heat needed to reheat LNG and convert it back into a gas is residual heat from local businesses, particularly the EON power station. If Gate terminal did not use this heat, it would be cooled in the cooling water basins by the fresh air. 

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How can LNG be used for small-scale applications?

  • LNG can be used for export from Gate terminal to smaller reception terminals, for example in the Baltic region.
  • LNG can be used as bunker fuel for sea-going vessels.
  • LNG can be used as bunker fuel for inland vessels.
  • LNG can be used as fuel for trucks.
  • LNG can be used by industries which are not connected to the gas network and now often use oil or propane as energy source.
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What are the main reasons for starting to use LNG as transport fuel?

  • LNG as a fuel has positive effects on the environment and health. With the combustion of natural gas, a lot less fine dust, nitrogen, sulphur and other emissions are released. The use of LNG instead of oil-based fuels reduces CO2 emissions by up to 20%, SO2 by 100%, NOx by almost 90% and fine dust by 400 to 600 tonnes a year.
  • Gas-fired engines using LNG are quieter than diesel engines; the difference is so great that trucks running on LNG can be used at night for distribution where trucks are now only allowed during the day to prevent noise nuisance.
  • The increasing use of LNG enhances the good economic position of the Netherlands as ‘gas hub’ of Northwest Europe.
  • From 2015, much stricter standards will apply to sulphur emissions in European and American coastal waters. This so-called Sulphur Emission Control Area (SECA) legislation makes it necessary for newly built ships to order engines which run on LNG.
  • Significant cost savings can be achieved on fuel consumption in ships because 80% of the operational costs of a ship consists of fuel costs. LNG is a cheaper and cleaner fuel.
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How does LNG as transport fuel contribute to Dutch climate objectives?

The use of LNG as transport fuel is in line with the future vision of a sustainable energy supply because natural gas is the cleanest fossil fuel. In time, fossil LNG can be replaced by LNG from biomass that comes from organic residual flows. In the meantime, LNG as transport fuel provides a cleaner and affordable alternative to diesel and fuel oil and can facilitate the transition to a completely sustainable energy supply. Just as important is the direct benefit to public health in populated areas; natural gas, and thus also LNG, produces much less nitrogen and fine dust when combusted and it produces a lot less noise.

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How does LNG Break Bulk fit into Dutch government policy?

In June 2012, the “Green Deal LNG Wadden and Rhine” was signed with Minister Verhagen and State Secretary Atsma. The aim here is to have at least 50 inland vessels, 50 sea-going vessels and 500 trucks running on LNG in 2015.. This new chain begins on Rotterdam’s Maasvlakte, at Gate terminal, where LNG enters the Netherlands via large tankers. 

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How does the use of LNG in transport benefit the Netherlands?

  • In 2013, PwC was commissioned by the Ministry of Economic Affairs to look into the economic impact of the introduction of LNG for transport on the basis of scenario analysis. In the medium scenario, the study showed that LNG for transport would yield around €2.7 billion in economic growth and 8000 working years up to 2030.
  • LNG can make a great contribution towards reducing emissions of harmful substances such as nitrogen, sulphur and fine dust. Various Dutch cities are taking active measures to reduce these emissions and LNG can help here and make a contribution towards improving public health.
  • Switching to LNG offers the transport sector in the Netherlands and Northwest Europe the opportunity to take the lead when it comes to making transport cleaner and more affordable, and in this way improve its competitive position and contribute towards the goals relating to climate, the environment and public health.
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Is the use of LNG as fuel new?

No; in this respect, Europe is lagging behind Asia, for example. Globally, 15 million cars already run on natural gas; in China and the US, thousands of trucks use LNG. In the Netherlands, we have also seen trucks using LNG in recent years, for example those belonging to Albert Heijn and Vos Logistics; the current total is around 230. At the moment, there are 5 Dutch inland vessels running on LNG with positive results.

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Why wait till now with LNG as fuel?

In Europe, Gate terminal is the first to make LNG suitable for small-scale distribution so that it can be used as fuel for ships and trucks. Gate terminal has only been open since 2011 and we are already involved in facilitating the distribution of LNG as fuel.