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CNG Natural Gas or Biogas cars. The blunt truth is Electric cars winning. But why?

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  • CNG Natural Gas or Biogas cars. The blunt truth is Electric cars winning. But why?

    Over the 3-4 years it become apparent that the future if you listen to the media is either electic or hydrogen powered cars. Drive a Tesla or a Prius and you're considered 'on the pace'. CNG or even LPG fails to get even a mention. There is no goldent bullet with any of these fuels, and it seems Electricty is not all that viable. It's certainly no greener, it just moves the pollution somewhere else. It's potential to source power from renewable energy is almost as far from practical reality as the Biomethane solutions.

    With current technology, in order of environmental impact and viabilty, none are great. Yet the stupidity list seems to go:

    Steam power
    Wood engines
    Hydrogen with current tech.
    Ethanol
    Electricity via current fossil sources
    Petroleum/Gasoline
    Diesel
    LPG
    CNG via current fossil sources
    Biogas / Biomethane
    Electricity via renewables.

    You might reasonably argue with my order but overall it's broadly correct. Some might say that Biomethan was the least stupid. The best of a bad bunch.

    With methane from whichever source working today, it may not be the winner, yet it's a real front-runner. Why is it not even considered as such when Hydrogen is?

    And i hate to think of the energy soak and the toxic cocktail all these cells will create? Suddenly a 20 year old CNG cylinder looks very good.
    Last edited by BritCNGUser; 09-01-2018, 02:40 AM.

  • #2
    This is an wonderful conversation to have. The same questions confuse me here in California. Why did CARB/EPA kill off consumer CNG vehicles? I think that CNG should be the automotive fuel of choice purely on economic grounds. The cost per unit energy wins by a long shot. The challenges are in economies of scale: compressors and fuel systems.

    The huge point that you make here is: given the current implementation of electric and hydrogen, these options are terrible by all metrics.

    Why are the "experts" so dumb?

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    • #3

      Some things remain a mystery...
      Last edited by trdscfjc; 09-02-2018, 11:54 PM.

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      • #4
        It's because CNG is a hydrocarbon gas, and hydrocarbon is a bad word these days.

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        • #5
          Susan Carpenter for Trucks.com December 17, 2018 - California Transit Agencies Must Convert to Zero-Emission Buses

          [Following a unanimnous vote by CARB Dec 14 2018] . . starting in 2029, all transit bus purchases in the state need to be zero-emission vehicles . . Of the 14,000 transit buses in the state, only 150 are electric presently . . buses running on batteries were not commercially available until 2015.

          L.A. County Metropolitan Transportation Authority has said it will make the switch by 2030 according to LA Metro spokesman Dave Sotero, who plans to use the new all-electric 60-foot articulated model from New Flyer.

          Jimmy O Dea, with the Union of Concerned Scientists, said the impacts will be noticeable.

          Zero-emission transit buses cost significantly more. An average 40-foot diesel-powered model costs about $500,000, according to the CARB. A natural-gas version adds $50,000 to the price, and a battery electric version is at least $250,000 more. But hydrogen fuel cell buses cost the most – more than $1 million each. But Electric buses cost, on average, 25 percent less to operate and maintain.

          https://www.trucks.com/2018/12/17/ca....google.com%2F


          California Transit Agencies that use CNG:

          Chico
          Fresno
          LA Metro Fleet size 2354
          OCTA Fleet size 584
          Riverside
          San Bernadino
          San Diego (MTS)
          Santa Rosa (Sonoma Co)
          Sacramento
          Yolo County
          .

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          • #6
            I think that Exxon WANTS THINGS THAT DONT WORK WELL .that way we will remain stuck with old diesel and gasoline and they will make a profit. ( h2 LOLROTF ) 3600 psi causes problems? try 10000 psi. cng hard to tax dont need exxon to refine it and bring it to my local station. exxon and company will try to stifle any other fuel source other than theirs !!!!!!

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            • #7
              if one were to consider that electrifying the 3000 transit buses (LA Metro and OCTA) is new load being put on the grid. And hydro and nuclear are not being allowed as new generating sources. The natural conclusion would be that, since solar and wind are not going to charge these buses when they are parked in the yard at night, the grid is going to be adding coal (not likely, but still the cheapest) and natural gas fired power plants to accomodate the new demand. Yet CARB orders transit operators not to buy CNG buses. Absurd. (but, then again, what else could be expected from an agency with an annual budget of $1.5B)

              Also consider: $250K premium for electric vs $50K for CNG; electric buses have been around less than 5 years - CNG over 20 years; BYD (China) stands to get the bulk of the new electric bus orders.
              .

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              • #8
                And, CARB has an answer to the fact that the state uses fossil-fuel plants in its electric mix (the state has mandated that it s only nuclear power plant, Diablo Canyon, be decommissioned within a decade):

                In September, California legislators passed a law requiring that the state s utilities provide 100 percent zero-emissions electricity by 2045. Given California s size, the law is one of the most ambitious in the US. This plan by Gov Jerry Brown ran into resistance from the energy industry and faces a formidable challenge in eliminating large natural-gas plants that help supply the state’s power grids when renewables are offline.

                Battery-electric and fuel cell buses are two potential avenues for investment, CARB noted. The air resources board added that roughly 12,000 natural gas or diesel fueled buses are on California's roads today, but only 153 zero-emissions buses operate in California.

                https://arstechnica.com/cars/2018/12...ns-bus-fleets/

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                • #9
                  Starting 1 January 2020, large transit agencies would be required to use renewable fuels for diesel and compressed natural gas (CNG) buses when fuel contracts are renewed to support existing renewable fuel policies.

                  Deferral. A transit agency may submit a request for extension or exemption from ZEB purchase requirements, under conditions outside the transit agency s control. A transit agency may use zero-emission cars or vans or bicycles to meet a portion of its ZEB requirements.

                  San Francisco MUNI operates a lot of trolley buses which use overhead (2) wires and street cars on tracks with an overhead (1) wire. SF electric fleet is powered by hydro from a dam completely inside Yosemite National Park (Naturalist John Muir felt a great loss from the destruction of the valley, his last major battle before his death in 1914.) None of these transit vehicles were counted in a summary of zero emission buses in use in the ten largest California transit agencies. Sounds similar to hydro dams not being included in the ranking of renewable electric generating power sources in the Northwest (so that more money is allocated to wind and solar until renewable targets are met.)

                  This article says 55 percent of all transit vehicles in California operate on alternative fuels (would have to be natural gas with the exception of a dozen or so fuel cell buses and around 600 trolley buses and street cars.)

                  323 Riverside
                  357 LA DOT
                  369 San Mateo
                  373 Foothill
                  485 Santa Clara ( VTA San Jose)
                  620 SF MUNI (327 electric trolley buses not included in total)
                  765 San Diego
                  813 AC Transit (Oakland)
                  879 OCTA (Orange County - LNG buses)
                  2452 LA Metro (entirely CNG fleet today)(electric utility supplying LA Metro uses 24% coal-fired plants)
                  2904 other agencies
                  10340 TOTAL (using the 55 percent cited in article would mean that 5700 CNG buses are presently operating in CA)

                  https://www.greencarcongress.com/201...08-arbict.html
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                  • #10
                    Robert Bryce for City Journal October 30, 2018 - Why Wind Power Isn’t the Answer

                    Two Harvard researchers published a paper showing that trying to fuel our energy-intensive society solely with renewables would require cartoonish amounts of land. How cartoonish? Consider: meeting America’s current demand for electricity alone—not including gasoline or jet fuel, or the natural gas required for things like space heating and fertilizer production—would require covering a territory twice the size of California with wind turbines.

                    Their study looks at 2016 energy-production data from 1,150 solar projects and 411 onshore wind projects. The combined capacity of the wind projects totaled 43,000 megawatts, or roughly half of all U.S. wind capacity that year. Miller and Keith concluded that solar panels produce about 10 times more energy per unit of land as wind turbines. Rural residents are objecting to wind projects because they don t want to see the red-blinking lights atop those massive turbines, all night, every night, for the rest of their lives.

                    The reality is that wind energy s expansion has been driven by federal subsidies and state-level mandates. Wind energy, cannot, and will not, meet a significant portion of our future energy needs because it requires too much land. Miller and Keiths paper shows that the ongoing push for 100-percent renewables, and, in particular, the idea that wind energy is going to be a major contributor to that goal, is not just wrongheaded—it’s an energy dead end.

                    https://www.city-journal.org/wind-po...not-the-answer


                    https://carboncounter.wordpress.com/...tive-at-night/

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                    • #11

                      Robert Wilson for CarbonCounter July 10 2015 - Are wind farms more productive at night?

                      I have calculated mean hourly output of wind farms in six EU countries. This averages over an entire year, so the result may be slightly biased due to the combination of seasonal changes in the hourly cycle and capacity additions.

                      (graphs show wind energy output increasing after 10am, peaks between 4pm and 10pm, and then tapers off)

                      Timing of the daily minimum is not consistent across countries. However, it tends to occur between 4 am and 10 am when electricity demand is relatively low.

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                      • #12
                        Rich Piellisch for NGTNews March 5 2019: LAX Looking to Prove Battery Power in Bus Fleet

                        BYD is to begin building the first of the 20 all-electric buses, for Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), in Lancaster CA in late April. The first bus is expected at LAX in August, with the remaining 19 in the following two to three months. BYD beat out a bid by New Flyer to supply the all-battery 60-footers.

                        The LAX airfield bus fleet currently consists of 26 vehicles: 14 diesel buses that are more than 20 years old, and a dozen 60-foot, CNG-fueled, articulated buses that are more than 10 years old. Current plans are to replace all 14 diesel buses with the BYD electrics, for a total of 32 buses.

                        He notes that LAWA/LAX is happy with 50 all-battery Chevy Bolt sedans now in service, that 25 more Bolts are on order, and that a further 25 EVs or PHEVs are about to be ordered – all to replace an aging fleet of 100 CNG-fueled Honda Civics. The airport also some CNG pickups:

                        https://ngtnews.com/lax-looking-to-p...r-in-bus-fleet
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