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20090912 Saturday September 12, 2009

Singapore opens largest CNG refuelling station in the world

channelnewsasia.com :

The world's largest CNG refuelling station - spanning over 7,000 square metres [75,000 square feet] - has opened in Singapore. It has 44 pump hoses for cars and 2 for buses, and is open 24 hours. This should address the problem of insufficient refuelling stations that users have complained about. The S$16m C-nergy station, the 5th CNG station in Singapore, is owned by the Union Energy Group. C-nergy is the brainchild of Teo Kiang Ang, who also runs TransCab, Singapore's second largest taxi company. Mr Teo plans to open 3 more CNG stations - in Bedok/Changi, Woodlands and Toa Payoh - within the next 3 years.

There are 4,200 CNG vehicles, 1/3 of them taxis, out of over 700,000 vehicles in Singapore. Still, users are hampered by a Catch-22 situation. Drivers are reluctant to switch to CNG despite the green tax rebate, because there are not enough CNG stations. CNG refuellers say they are reluctant to spend millions to build CNG stations because there are not enough CNG vehicles. But as oil prices increase and relatively cheaper CNG becomes more easily available, Mr Teo expects more to switch to CNG vehicles.

- It is probably a good (or at least slighty better) thing from an environmental point of view for more to switch to CNG vehicles, since vehicles which run on CNG, or compressed natural gas, have slightly less emissions than conventional petrol vehicles. Still, my contention remains that CNG is still natural gas, and natural gas is still a fossil fuel, as prone to depletion as any fossil fuel is.

Big-picture wise, using CNG, and consequently importing LNG, is at best an interim solution, which my earlier post has explained in greater detail. From a longer term point of view, my money remains on hybrid vehicles, followed by electric cars, and as for the source of energy, nuclear power, followed, eventually, by space solar.

See also :

1. Indonesia's LNG supremacy wanes as Chevron's fields run short
2. LNG at best an interim measure, alternatives must be looked into
3. Singapore's first public CNG station to be ready by Jan 2008
4. Singapore : 3 more CNG stations to open by end of 2008
5. Indonesia to speed up CNG vehicle conversion, using up more of its natural gas

(2009-09-12 07:35:57 SGT) [Energy] Permalink


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