The role of gas in the future mobility ecosystem

The CO2-free distant future of mobility is assumed to be electricity, but is this true for all applications and are there transitional solutions?​

Last week’s event “Gas in der Mobilität – die richtige Lösung zur richtigen Zeit“ put a focus on the advantages of natural gas at the OMV headquarter in Vienna. Leading voices from the energy and automotive sector came together to discuss potential roles of compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquid natural gas (LNG) within various areas of mobility solutions. Our mobility & energy experts Johannes Scherrer and Welf Wiemer were present and engaged with the experts.​

The future “fuel” mix – (still) petrol, (more) gas and electricity?

While the mutual understanding of mobility of the future at the event was to have CO2 reduced solutions, the panel discussants varied about when different technologies will be used and which use-case they will serve best. “There is no longer a One-fits-all solution.” This was the overall agreement on the different panels, moderated by Christian Clerici – moderator and mobility enthusiast.​

Yes, there are advantages for natural gas: Emissions from the combustion of natural gas are already lower than those of diesel and with the use of biogas it could even be CO2-neutral. “As of today, CNG has a potential to reduce CO2 emissions and it is a proven technology with existing infrastructure” Mr. Wurm, Head of Porsche Austria elaborates.

There are advantages from both CNG and LNG, at least as a transitional solution or in specific, mainly freight or public transport applications, where battery electric vehicles are not yet readily available or still under development. Natural gas has proven its worth many times over in public transport (CNG buses) and long-distance transport for heavy goods (LNG trucks). For Michael Sattler, Head of Future Energy at OMV, it is clear that gas is a crucial technology for future mobility solutions, where a broad mix of technologies will be necessary.​

Yes, it will need different technologies for future mobility solutions.

The event showed once more that a cross-industry discussion is ongoing and becomes more and more necessary – a core believe of accilium, which successfully orchestrates those industries since the beginning: We at accilium strongly agree, that it will need many different solutions for future mobility use-cases.

In the short run CNG and LNG are applicable options, especially for heavy duty trucks and long distances, where the technology is readily available. And yet in the long run we believe, a focus on battery electric vehicles and hydrogen powered mobility will be more fruitful. But even with those technologies it is necessary to differentiate use-cases for each technology and especially end with some myths about them.

Keen to discuss this further? Contact us or visit our MaaS conference in November.