LNG: The Intersection of Value and Sustainability

Posted on Thursday, February 24, 2022

The National Asphalt Pavement Association (NAPA) has advanced and supported the asphalt industry since 1955. Through their commitment to providing technical guidance for their members and by engaging decision makers, NAPA and statewide asphalt pavement professional organizations like the Asphalt Pavement Association of Indiana (APAI) advance the industry through innovation and research in pursuit of promoting safe, efficient, and sustainable operations.


Earlier this year, NAPA published a monumental list of Asphalt Pavement Industry Goals for Climate Change Stewardship: The Road Ahead toward Net Zero Carbon Emissions by 2050.1 NAPA believes that reducing carbon emissions will be the industry’s foremost imperative over the next several decades, persisting even amid changing political or economic situations.
These four goals represent how the asphalt pavement industry is acting now:

  1. Achieve net-zero carbon emissions during asphalt production and construction by 2050. (Scope 1 Emissions)
  2. Partner with customers to reduce emissions through pavement quality, durability, longevity, and efficiency standards to 2050. (Downstream Scope 3 Emissions)
  3. Develop a net-zero supply chain by 2050. (Upstream Scope 3 Emissions)
  4. Transition to electricity from renewable energy providers to support net-zero carbon electricity generation by 2050 and reduce electrical intensities.

By focusing on engineering, research, and innovative solutions, NAPA guides the asphalt industry nationally to proactively reduce carbon emissions to ensure long-term viability and prosperity.

LIQUEFIED NATURAL GAS: FUELING THE ROADFORWARD

There are many avenues for the asphalt industry to make progress toward its sustainability goals. One readily-available and effective method is to leverage liquefied natural gas (LNG). LNG offers numerous benefits that enable organizations to reduce emissions and operate more economically.

LNG is a clear non-toxic liquid that forms when natural gas is purified and cooled to -162 C. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the cooling process shrinks the volume of natural gas 600 times.2 Natural gas consists primarily of methane and produces much lower carbon emissions when compared to other fossil fuels – approximately 56% less CO2 emissions than fuel oil.3

LNG also produces a more consistent burner flame that yields longer-lasting combusting flights and filters, less soot in burners, and less UV sensor burn-up.4 As a cleaner-burning fuel, LNG reduces wear and tear on equipment and minimizes maintenance and downtime expenses. In addition to the environmental benefits, LNG maintains more stable pricing than diesel and propane, lowering the cost of asphalt production and allowing for more consistent profit margins, all while reducing emissions by 30-50%.5 In addition to the extraordinary cost savings of LNG per gallon, the use of natural gas can lead to an operational savings of as much as $1.00 an asphalt ton or equal to $0.30 per gallon (waste oil equivalent).

MOVING FORWARD WITH LNG

Kinetrex Energy, a Kinder Morgan company, is a leading liquefied natural gas provider that has been helping the asphalt industry advance toward its goal of net-zero emissions. With two liquefied natural gas plants and 24 million gallons of LNG storage capacity, Kinetrex offers affordable, sustainable, turn-key LNG solutions that drive environmental and economic results for companies as they progress on The Road Forward.

Sources

  1. https://www.asphaltpavement.org/climate/industry-goals
  2. https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/natural-gas/liquefied-natural-gas.php
  3. https://www.nwga.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/NWGA-Board-Member-Manual-18.pdf
  4. https://www.plantengineering.com/articles/fueling-asphalt-production-with-lng-and-cng/
  5. https://www.eia.gov/environment/emissions/co2_vol_mass.php
  6. Photo: https://www.pexels.com/photo/timelapse-photography-of-vehicles-on-road-3043592/
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