Opinions differ on the environmental impact of LNG. While some studies indicate that LNG vehicles emit more NOx, others underscore LNG's environmental credentials. One thing is certain: Compared to diesel-burning vehicles, LNG CO2 emissions are lower, and the vehicles are quieter.
However, like compressed natural gas (CNG), LNG is primarily comprised of methane, a substance that is more damaging to the climate than CO2 (in contrast to LPG, or liquefied petroleum gas, which is made up of propane and butane). Both types of gas thus present additional challenges for engine management and emissions technology. Under certain operating conditions, 1-2 % methane can escape into the atmosphere, which must be prevented at all costs. In the context of achieving climate-neutral road transport, European officials are generally positive about the fuel produced from methane.
Toll exemptions and subsidies for LNG heavy goods vehicles
Since the EU classifies LNG and CNG vehicles as being environmentally friendly, they are toll exempt up to 2023. This is an important step in stimulating demand for LNG fuel in particular. For haulage companies thinking of transitioning to LNG, there's another consideration: The German Federal Ministry of Transport is currently offering attractive lump-sum subsidies for the purchase of environmentally friendly vehicles. So is LNG the perfect fuel?