The Endesa coal transport service between Ferrol Port Terminal and the As Pontes Thermal Production Unit in A Coruña has introduced three new high-powered and ecologically efficient lorries that run on liquefied natural gas (LNG). They are the first of their kind on Europe’s roads. This upgrade is in line with Endesa’s continuing drive towards natural gas-powered vehicles and their environmental advantages. Pérez Torres Marítima, the company that provides the coal transport service, is also joining in our efforts.
Endesa is upgrading its thermal plant in As Pontes with a 217 million euro investment to meet the demanding BREF requirements with a significant reduction in gas emissions. The company intends to complement its efforts by introducing lorries for more sustainable transport without sacrificing power, given that the route to As Pontes has a steep incline that requires powerful engines. It is also part of Endesa's commitment to LNG, and for good reason –– the company is the second largest gas supplier with 79,834 GWh in 2017 and 1.6 million supply points.
The three new vehicles that Pérez Torres Marítima operates are the Iveco Stralis NP 460, together with the existing Iveco Stralis NP 400, which is also gas-powered. The new vehicles’ engines generate 460 horsepower. They are the first lorries running on liquefied natural gas with a 12-gear automated shift, thanks to automated transmission, guaranteeing greater comfort when driving and lower fuel consumption, with a 37% saving compared to the cost of diesel. In short, the engine is as powerful as a diesel, but lighter, quieter and easier to use.
The new model also has an advantage when it comes to refuelling. It can cover up to 1,600 kilometres between refills, saving time and increasing autonomy without the need to stop at a service station. What is more, maintenance intervals have been extended to 90,000 kilometres. Because they run on LNG, the new vehicles emit 10% less CO2, 60% less NOx and 80% less CH4. The engine also creates far less noise.
These increases in environmental efficiency are highly worthwhile for Endesa, since the entire fleet makes around 800 trips between Ferrol and As Pontes every day, the equivalent of 150,000 to 180,000 every year. Besides, the transformation of the energy sector is also spreading to transport, where there is a decided shift towards electricity for light vehicles and liquefied natural gas as a fuel for lorries and even trains.