UPS Drastically Increased the Use of Renewable Natural Gas

(3BL Media/Justmeans) The burning of fossil fuels has increased the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Shipping companies like UPS are investing in renewable natural gas (RNG) as an alternative to fossil fuels. RNG, also known as biomethane, is a gas that is completely interchangeable with conventional natural gas, and can be used in natural gas vehicles. It is a biofuel produced from biomass sources such as decomposing organic waste in landfills, wastewater treatment and agriculture. It is distributed through the natural gas pipeline system, which makes it available as liquefied natural gas (LNG) or compressed natural gas (CNG). Using RNG reduces lifecycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions compared to conventional diesel.

UPS has drastically increased its use of renewable natural gas (RNG). The shipping company recently announced an agreement with Big Ox Energy, a subsidiary of Environmental Energy Capital LLC, to buy 10 million gallon equivalents of RNG annually, through 2024. This marks the company’s largest investment in RNG. Earlier this year, UPS signed a five-year agreement with AMP Energy for 1.5 million gallon equivalents of RNG annually. The RNG comes from the Fair Oaks dairy farm in Indiana. Both RNG agreements help the company reach its goal of having 40 percent of all ground transportation fleet fuel from sources other than diesel and conventional gas by 2025.

UPS used over 97 million gallons of alternative fuels in its ground fleet in 2016, representing 19.6 percent of its total ground fleet fuel purchases. The company is on track to use 14 million gallons of RNG in 2017. There are over 5,200 CNG and LNG vehicles in its ground fleet. UPS has invested over $750 million in alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles and fueling stations globally since 2009.

“These agreements add significantly to our investment in the use of RNG and will help put us on track to nearly triple our annual use of RNG,” said Mike Casteel, UPS director of fleet procurement. “They are also a direct reflection of our ongoing commitment to help shape the renewable natural gas industry.”

“UPS continues to make investments in renewable natural gas that help move the industry forward,” said Rob Larsen, CEO of Big Ox Energy. “Our agreement with UPS is one of the largest contracts we have signed to date and among the largest ever in the RNG market.”

Using alternative fuels is part of the strategy of UPS to achieve its goal of reducing GHG emissions by 12 percent by 2025. RNG is produced in places where organic waste decomposes and releases methane, such as landfills. Methane is a GHG 25 times more powerful than carbon dioxide. The use of RNG helps UPS meet its goals while helping combat climate change. That is a win for the company and for the planet.

Photo: UPS