Automotive LPG

UKLPG commissioned Millbrook Proving Ground to undertake a comprehensive review, Millbrook Evidence Report: The Future of LPG and its Use as an Automotive Fuel over the Next 35 Years’ (February 2015), to identify the role automotive LPG could play in the future of the transport sector through to 2050.

“The research, backed by supporting evidence, clearly identifies the potential for a strong future for automotive LPG to 2050. We’re keen to work together with the automotive industry and policy makers to develop the future of low-carbon road transport in which automotive LPG plays a key role,” said UKLPG chief executive Rob Shuttleworth. “As an incredibly versatile, plentiful and clean fuel, automotive LPG deserves far greater recognition for its air quality, low-carbon and cost effective benefits.

“Stronger collaboration across the automotive sector can help reduce harmful emissions, decrease fuel bills and make better use of the established infrastructure at the UK’s disposal.”

“Based on our comprehensive, independent review of the available evidence, it is clear that there is a role for automotive LPG through to 2050,” said Phillip Taylor, principal engineer, Powertrain Integration, Alternative Propulsion, Energy and CO2 at Millbrook Proving Ground. “The international emissions data is favourable to LPG, showing strong performance under well-to-wheel testing conditions.

“In addition, the internal combustion engine will continue to make up a reasonable proportion of the total transport mix in the next 35 years and there are possibilities for LPG as both a mono and dual fuel, working with existing and future powertrain technologies.”

LPG Autogas Blueprint: A low carbon alternative fuel for today
The Potential Emissions Savings of LPG in Transport

In 2013 UKLPG commissioned Element Energy to look into the contribution LPG can make to the passenger car fleet. According to Element Energy’s research, converting 10% of medium to large spark ignition internal combustion engine (SI ICE) cars and vans to dual-fuel LPG would bring savings of 100 kt CO2. This is based on accepted tank-to-wheel (TTW) savings of approximately 11% for an LPG vehicle compared to SI ICE.

To view and download a copy of the report please click on the link below. 

LowCVP Road Transport Future Fuels Roadmap

The UK’s long term climate strategy implies a virtual decarbonisation of road transport by 2050. Cutting emissions through the full life cycle of fuels and energy supplied for transport is an important part of the challenge and requires clear long term policies from the UK to build on the most recent announcements from the EU.

The LowCVP – the stakeholder body which brings government, industry and other stakeholders together to focus on the challenges of decarbonising road transport - commissioned Element Energy to analyse the UK’s options for meeting the Renewable Energy Directive’s (RED) 2020 transport target which states that at least 10% of the final energy consumption in transport must come from renewable sources. This and the parallel Fuels Roadmap report benefitted from wide industry consultation and explicitly set out to align with existing powertrain roadmaps (including those published by the Automotive Council and the LowCVP).

The Element Energy lead author Celine Cluzel noted: “Meeting the UK’s carbon reduction targets calls for a transformation of the powertrains and fuels used in the vehicle fleet. While industry players have divergent views on technology choices and policy instruments, it was very encouraging to see that all the stakeholders we consulted during the project support and want to play a role in that transformation. The Fuels Roadmap, by identifying the key milestones, is a positive step towards delivering the change that will be required.”

Get on the Gas to a Fairer Fuel Duty

In line with today’s Autumn Statement, trade body UKLPG – which represents the interests of the Liquefied Petroleum Gas industry – is urging the Department for Transport (DfT) and Her Majesty’s Treasury (HMT) to review the role of LPG Autogas in an integrated road fuels strategy.

UKLPG asks for equal recognition for LPG Autogas in the fuel duty commitment to 2024 which will deliver significant benefits to the UK economy through VAT paid on vehicle conversions, as well as reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. More LPG powered cars will help contribute to the reduction of harmful pollutants such as NOx from transport and reduce costs to the NHS.

Rob Shuttleworth, chief executive of UKLPG, said: “While we welcome the commitment the government has made to include gaseous fuels within future transport policy, we believe that there should be duty parity for all fuels within the strategy. Alongside other gaseous fuels, LPG Autogas has a clear role to play in tackling GHG emissions from transport and improving air quality in our cities.”

In representations to DfT and HMT, UKLPG confirmed there are more than 155,000 vehicles in the UK powered by LPG Autogas. LPG Autogas has also been included within the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership (LowCVP) Road Transport Future Fuels Roadmap, which aligns with the powertrain roadmap of the Automotive Council.

Research completed last year by Element Energy showed that converting 10% of medium to large spark ignition internal combustion engine cars and vans to dual-fuel LPG would bring savings of 100 kt CO2. In addition, data from Millbrook has highlighted that conversion of older Euro 2 or 3 diesel taxis to LPG engines can improve nitrogen oxide (NOX) emissions by more than 90%.

UKLPG has also outlined the pioneering role of LPG Autogas. Shuttleworth explained: “Through the latest technology development, the industry is on the verge of an innovative solution to reduce emissions from HGVs using an LPG-diesel blend. Offering significant CO2 savings and overall GHG reductions, this pioneering dual-fuel automatically adjusts the blend of LPG and diesel used according to the vehicle’s load and road topography.

“An additional opportunity can be found with bio-propane (bio-LPG). Created from renewable sources, bio-LPG is a waste product of bio-diesel production and will act as a ‘drop-in fuel’ for existing infrastructure and conversions due to its chemical similarities to conventional LPG.”

Following the Autumn Statement, UKLPG will be engaging further with DfT and HMT to agree next steps towards ensuring equal recognition for LPG Autogas in the fuel duty commitment to 2024.

Fair Fuel UK Camapign

UKLPG believes LPG autogas, in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement, should have been included alongside LNG and CNG in having its duty differential level maintained until 2024. LPG autogas remains the cheapest, most widely available fuel on the market, the industry and FairFuelUK strongly believes that it should receive the same level of support as other gaseous fuels.

"The LPG industry fully supports FairFuel UK’s campaign to urge the Government to maintain the lower fuel duty for automotive LPG beyond 2015, to encourage continued take up of this low carbon, low emission fuel. This will not only support long-term investment in the availability of LPG at more than 1,400 sites nationwide, but also give drivers the confidence to convert to LPG and benefit from greener, more cost-effective motoring."

The trade association for the LPG industry in the UK