The DVIRE initiative will encourage freight carriers to move from diesel to methane and biomethane powered vehicles

2020-12-21

The breaking point in the Lithuanian domestic market will be pursued by offering to purchase trucks with lower total cost of ownership (TCO) than that of diesel alternatives.

The startup DVIRE, which promotes alternative renewable fuels, together with commercial vehicle manufacturers and companies operating fuel refilling infrastructure, will encourage carriers to review their vehicle purchase plans this year and to purchase trucks fuelled with methane and biomethane with a TCO (acquisition and operation) equal to or better than diesel alternatives of the same model.

The initiative is supported by the main market players – international vehicle manufacturers Iveco and Scania Lietuva, the compressed gas filling infrastructure company SG Dujos and Panevėžys Bus Fleet.

“The main goal of the Dvire initiative, which is coded in the name of the initiative, is to encourage the participants of the Lithuanian internal transport market to drive differently from the way they did before. We will encourage the use of methane-fuelled vehicles in order to provide the foundation for the use of bio-methane, hydrogen and electricity generated by the sun, wind and recycled waste on Lithuanian roads in the near future, in addition to methane fuel. We seek to build a sustainable transport fleet in Lithuania as soon as possible, which will allow for a significant reduction of CO2 emissions,” Marius Čižas, the manager of the DVIRE, said.

In terms of CO2 reduction indicators in the transport sector Lithuania is lagging behind in the EU

According to Čižas, the EU is making a major effort to achieve a climate-neutral economy by 2050, to promote the use of alternative renewable fuels – biomethane, hydrogen and electricity in every Member State, although Lithuania is lagging behind in this area. “It is clear that despite recent attempts by the state to catalyse the market, Lithuania is significantly lagging behind the targets set by the EU to significantly reduce CO2 emissions. We hope that the changes will accelerate after the adoption of the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Alternative Fuels, which has already reached the Seimas and may be adopted during its term.

However, we have decided to stop waiting and act by involving the majority of the stakeholders. We hope that this year we will be able to draw the attention of local carriers, who usually choose new vehicles in autumn. In the future, we expect support from the state: in developed European markets, carriers get comprehensible financial incentives. Lithuanian carriers operating in the international markets already use such incentives, but their trucks travel on the roads of Western Europe, but not on the roads of Lithuania,” Čižas said.

“We hope that our joint initiative will promote a breakthrough in the market and we will soon see the first gas fuelled vehicles on Lithuanian roads. Iveco is a leader in the development of the gas technology in transport and can already provide the widest range of automotive products, using gas engines of five different capacities in all types of commercial vehicles, from three-litre light commercial Iveco Daily to 13-litre 460AJ heavy off-road X-WAY and a concrete mixer, which can operate using compressed or liquefied methane and biomethane. Each year European transport companies purchase more Iveco vehicles due to many advantages of this product. However, in Lithuania, due to insufficient incentives, the market is still in a starting position, excluding city bus fleets or individual methane gas enthusiasts. Although Lithuanian carriers are willing to test and purchase methane-powered vehicles and see their potential advantages in terms of TCO, due to the poor gas fuelling infrastructure and insufficient financial incentives they have so far refused to take risks. We hope that our new initiative will stir up the market, and when the first vehicles appear on the roads, they will be an additional incentive and motivation to expand the infrastructure of the gas filling stations,” Ernestas Jakubonis, head of Iveco representative office for the Baltic countries, said.

In this initiative of transition to sustainable transport, Scania promises to contribute with its solutions by offering special prices for the purchase and maintenance of gas-powered engine trucks as well as financing under very attractive conditions.

“More and more Scania customers are opting for gas trucks in the Baltic countries. In Lithuania, dozens of transport companies have purchased or tested Scania gas technologies. These companies, like our servicing chain, have gained a lot of experience in operating and maintaining such vehicles. Thanks to the Scania modular system, gas solutions are applied in all segments of heavy-duty transport, ranging from local transport segments, such as distribution, waste transportation, tippers, concrete mixers, trucks for the transportation of milk, trucks for forestry works all through to long haul trucks. Thus, it is already possible to use methane- and biomethane-powered Scania trucks efficiently in Lithuania for various transportation tasks and to get obvious economic benefits,” Darius Snieška, area manager for Scania Lietuva, noted.

“We are developing methane refuelling infrastructure, we have installed a network of public and closed filling stations in the major cities of Lithuania, and we are ready to fill vehicles with biomethane as soon as this fuel is produced in the Lithuanian market. Today we already fill the busses with hydrogen-enriched methane in three major cities of Lithuania. We are ready for the breakthrough by offering an attractive price for natural gas in order to bring more methane powered vehicles to the market. We support the initiative and hope that once all major market players have joined, we will really stir the market and encourage freight carriers to seriously consider the purchase of methane- and biomethane-powered vehicles here and now,” Virginijus Korsakas, general manager of SG Dujos, said.

“We are contributing to the initiative by providing an opportunity for vehicles to use the only methane filling station in Panevėžys and therefore to integrate in the common system of the methane gas infrastructure by filling not only the vehicles of our bus fleet, but also providing open access to all methane gas-powered vehicles,” Arnoldas Gražys, director of Panevėžys Autobusų Parkas, said.

Methane gas technologies reduce CO2 emissions, eliminate nitrogen oxides (NOx) to a minimum and limit engine noise by half, and have achieved a high level of efficiency equivalent to diesel alternatives. In large cities where reduction of noise levels is important, these characteristics open up new opportunities for transport operations.

About UAB Dvire:
The DVIRE startup seeks to accelerate the use of alternative renewable fuels in the Lithuanian transport sector. DVIRE focuses on biomethane and hydrogen, their use together with electricity and other alternative fuels. DVIREaims to promote the use of alternative renewable fuels in the transport sector, to help fuel suppliers and fuel consumers significantly reduce CO2 emissions, to adapt to new environmental requirements, and to make a significant contribution to the development of infrastructure for alternative renewable fuels. DVIRE provides consultancy on the preparation for the implementation of the new EU environmental regulations.

About Iveco manufacturer:
Iveco of the CNH Industrial Group is a global manufacturer of light-, medium- and heavy-duty commercial vehicles, urban and intercity buses, firefighting, defence and off-road vehicles, and vehicles for construction and mining operations.
With a view to provide secure, efficient and sustainable mobility, Iveco develops technological solutions that respect both people and the environment. For over 30 years, Iveco has invested in the development of alternative fuel-powered vehicles and is now able to offer all kinds of commercial vehicles to the market that use natural gas and biomethane. The company is recognized as a European leader in research on alternative fuel take-up, and also in selling vehicles powered by natural gas, including trucks, vans and buses.

About Scania CV AB and UAB Scania Lietuva
Scania is a world leading supplier of sustainable transport solutions operating in over 100 countries. By developing a sustainable transport system together with its partners and customers, the company offers the widest range of alternative fuel-powered heavy-duty vehicles to the market. Scania trucks feature all types of alternative fuels, such as biogas and natural gas (LNG and CNG), electric and hybrid solutions, hydrogenated vegetable oils (HVO), bioethanol, and biodiesel. Increasing customer profitability through sustainable solutions is the company’s main goal and strategy.
UAB Scania Lietuva is the official representative of Scania CV AB, a Swedish bus manufacturer, in the country. The company sells new and used trucks and buses, offers their financing and insurance, performs technical service and repairs in authorized services centres in Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda and Šiauliai, and provides other services related to the efficiency and sustainability of heavy-duty vehicles.

About SG Dujos
The main areas of operations of the SG Dujos group of companies, are the development and adaptation of the infrastructure for compressed (CNG) and liquefied (LNG) natural gas (methane) in the Lithuanian transport sector and industry. The group is a pioneer in the application of compressed natural gas as a type of fuel in the Lithuanian transport sector, the market and innovation leader that successfully operates significantly contributing to the development of alternative fuels in Lithuania. SG Dujos has established its own compressed natural gas production bases in Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda, Šiauliai, Marijampolė, Ukmergė and Telšiai, as well as the first hydrogen fuel research laboratory in Pabradė.

About Panevėžys Autobusų Parkas:
The main activity of Panevėžys Bus Fleet is passenger transport on urban, suburban, long-distance and charter routes. The company operates a fleet of CNG-fuelled buses and a CNG filling station.

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