The manufacturer aligned with Exxon, Gazprom and other companies to sign a declaration of intent.
Volkswagen is taking a bigger step towards the world of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG). The automaker has signed a joint declaration of intent with CNG filling stations and gas networks to expand CNG usage in Europe. The effort will be focused in Germany, with a goal of increasing CNG fleet vehicle usage to 1 million cars by 2025. To support that increase, the initiative also aims to more than double the number of CNG filling stations from 900 to 2,000 in the same timeframe.
The effort will apply to both cars and trucks, including public transportation in major cities. And though Germany is the primary focus of the initiative, the effort will be promoted throughout Europe.
"Due to its purview, Volkswagen Group recognizes its considerable social responsiblity with regard to the energy revolution,” said Dr. UIlrich Eichorn, Volkswagen’s head of research and development, in a press release. “Its short-term availability makes natural gas an important component of our overall strategy for eco-friendly mobility of the future. Owing to the addition of methane from renewable resources, the propellant can gradually become even greener.”
We could get a bit vicious here and say VW would likely never have taken this step if dieselgate hadn’t happened. CNG is a cleaner burning fuel source by far compared to gasoline or diesel, and with the fuel being readily available thanks to new harvesting techniques, there’s certainly a strong case to expand its usage. The long-standing oil lobby has certainly been a factor in that not happening over the years, but with electric vehicles gaining both range and popularity by the day, going CNG can provide the short-term solution VW implies – bridging the emissions gap until electric technology is dialed in.
With gasoline and diesel still holding strong in the United States – and with the Trump administration casting all kinds of uncertainty about the future of emission standards – it’s highly unlikely Volkswagen’s CNG efforts will make it across the pond.
VOLKSWAGEN GROUP EXPEDITES JOINT EXTENSION OF GAS MOBILITY
- Volkswagen Group signs statement about expansion of CNG mobility
- The objective: increasing CNG vehicle fleet in Germany tenfold to 1 million by 2025, and expanding filling station network to 2.000 locations
- Gas-fuelled mobility is environmental protection that is immediately available
Wolfsburg, 03 May 2017 – Volkswagen Group, operators of CNG filling stations and gas networks have signed a joint declaration of intent, committing themselves to the extension of CNG mobility. CNG signifies "Compressed Natural Gas" and can be both natural gas or regenerative gas gained from green electricity. The signers thereby corroborate the objectives of the "Round Table for Natural Gas Mobility" initiated by the Federal Ministry of Economy in 2016, where representatives of vehicle manufacturers, the gas industry, filling stations operators as well as representatives of important retail customers, fleet operators and the public sector came together.
With their contributions, the signers, together with other vehicle manufacturers, works towards multiplying the CNG vehicle fleet in Germany tenfold to 1 million vehicles by 2015. Moreover, the initiative aims to expedite the extension of the filling station network in Germany to increase it from 900 locations today to 2.000 by 2025. On the basis of the EU directive 2014/94 (the deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure), the expansion will also be promoted in other European countries.
"Due to its purview, Volkswagen Group recognises its considerable social responsible with regard to the energy revolution. Its short-term availability makes natural gas an important component of our overall strategy for eco-friendly mobility of the future. Owing to the addition of methane from renewable resources, the propellant can gradually become even greener. This makes it an important constituent of the energy revolution in the transport sector in the long run, too," says Dr Ulrich Eichhorn, head of research and development at Volkswagen.
The corporations came together to expedite the extension of CNG mobility. This applies to both car and truck traffic as well as public transport in cities and municipalities. The statement was signed by Volkswagen Group as well as E.ON Gas Mobil GmbH, Gazprom NGV Europe GmbH, Gazu GmbH, ONTRAS Gastransport GmbH, Open Grid Europe GmbH, Pitpoint B.V. and TOTAL Deutschland GmbH.
The partners aim to win even more companies over to the collaboration. Specific measures to achieve these goals will be arranged separately.
This approach is in line with the alternative fuel strategy of the European Union and the announcements made by the Federal Government in its recently-passed climate protection plan 2050.