Combination of RNG/Renewable Natural Gas and NZ Engine To Meet Goals Faster and Cheaper than Batteries or Hydrogen

By Rich Piellisch, Fleets & Fuels.

The super low-NOX engine from Cummins Westport, powered by RNG/renewable natural gas, will allow California to meet its goal of zero-emission transmit buses more quickly and for less money that it will with battery electric or hydrogen fuel cell buses, says a new analysis.

Fleet costs will rise by just 1% with LNOx+RNG, as compared to 8% to 14% for all-electric buses or 9% to 13%, according to a presentation last week by by Dana Lowell of M.J. Bradley & Associates and Julia Lester of Ramboll/Environ for LA Metro.

LA Metro switched entirely to compressed natural gas operation in 2011 – the currently operates 2,194 CNG buses, according to Bradley-Ramboll – so would face no infrastructure/depot-upgrade costs to make the switch to LNOx+RNG.