Saturday 19 October 2019

Cavan trucking firm makes first zero-carbon trip

Transport director Ray Cole
Transport director Ray Cole

Fearghal O'Connor

Virginia International Logistics has become the first haulier in Ireland to complete a zero-carbon heavy goods vehicle (HGV) delivery to Europe.

The truck was fuelled by renewable gas for the more than 1,000km round-trip, carrying processed beef from Liffey Meats in Ballyjamesduff to Caen in northern France.

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Ireland's commercial transport fleet makes up just 3pc of vehicles on the road but is responsible for a fifth of the transport sector's carbon emissions.

Using natural gas can reduce HGV emissions by up to 22pc, while renewable gas eliminates emissions.

The truck was fuelled with biomethane from Europe delivered to Virginia by Gas Networks Ireland's network.

It is developing a network of 150 compressed natural gas (CNG) stations in Ireland, and it is understood there is potential to produce indigenous renewable gas here at a lower cost.

Gas Networks Ireland has plans to reduce Ireland's total carbon emissions by one third, and create a net zero-carbon gas network, according to its Vision 2050 document published this week.

The Government's Climate Action Plan commits to setting a target by the end of this year for renewable gas on the network by 2030.

It states the need to establish the necessary supports to deliver this target. The Gas Networks Ireland document outlined support for "a challenging target". CNG for transport is one of the key gas technologies set out in the document.

Ray Cole, transport director of Virginia Transport, said it was the latest low carbon milestone for the firm.

"Transport is changing and we are proud to be leading the way in Ireland," he said.

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