The NGV 2009 International Conference in Prague
On 28 and 29 January 2009 the Czech Gas Association held the second annual NGV conference, NGV 2009, Prospects for the Development and Use of CNG in Transport. The conference has been one of this year’s most important events with an international dimension, and was dedicated to compressed natural gas (CNG) and biomethane in transport. Natural gas and, more recently, the renewable biomethane, are regarded as the most promising transport fuels over the medium term, and perceived as a bridge to future technologies. CNG is a recognised fuel in transport today and it should therefore not be perceived as competing with petrol or diesel.
The conference attracted prominent Czech and international experts to Prague. NGVs are being increasingly included in many companies’ vehicle fleets and private individuals are also becoming more and more interested in them. The programme of introducing gas into the transport sector is an environmental and economic topic as well as an energy, strategic, and security topic. This fact was highlighted in many parts of the papers delivered by Václav Pačes, President, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Martin Bursík, Minister of the Environment, Richard Kolodziej, IANGV President and NGV America President, and Manuel Lage, General Manager, NGVA Europe. Professor Petr Moos, Dean of ČVUT’s Faculty of Transport, described an innovative scenario for the transport sector.
The number of CNG vehicles is statistically monitored in every country. This is also reflected in the broadening range of CNG vehicles on offer and the sales of CNG. Speakers from the Czech Republic and other countries (Eugen Pronin from Russia, Bernhard Jeken and Roland Bartosch from Germany, Georgi Jaigarov from Bulgaria, and Michal Tkáč from Slovakia), who described CNG developments in their respective countries, confirmed this positive fact in their presentations.
Czech companies operating in this area presented their forthcoming projects for the rollout of new refuelling stations in the immediate future and expect a denser network. Vítkovice Cylinders, a.s., the General Partner of the conference, described a programme for the development of their own CNG refuelling station network under the name “CNG Vitall”, RWE Plynoprojekt, a.s. and Bonett Gas Investment, a.s. also presented their plans and opportunities for building and servicing CNG refuelling stations. The use of CNG vehicles for municipal waste collection is a very topical proposition and highly promising for urban areas. Gas company Pražská plynárenská, a.s. described a cooperation with Pražské služby, a.s. and the continued construction of CNG refuelling stations in Prague, which is being prepared.
Swedish company FordonGas presented its practical experience in use of biomethane in transport. The biomethane is used in public transport for powering buses. Some other international speakers mentioned their good experience with biomethane.
To conclude, on behalf of the Czech Gas Association let me express thanks to our General Partner, Vítkovice Cylinders, a.s., Main Partners of the conference, E.ON Česká republika, a.s., Bonett Gas Investment, a.s., Pražská plynárenská, a.s. and RWE Transgas, a.s., Partners of the conference Linde Material Handling ČR, s.r.o., Motor Jikov Group, a.s., Tedom, s.r.o., Tvaja CNG, s.r.o., and Unidataz, s.r.o., and Media Partners, the Plyn magazine, Czas na Gaz, NGVA Europe and the gvr, and other colleagues for their support and co-operation in the organisation of the conference.
Author: Pavel Novák, Czech Gas Association