DATS 24 and gas.be inaugurate 100th Belgian CNG station
Executive for Environment and Sustainability of Flemish Brabant Tie Roefs opened the 100th CNG station in Belgium. This CNG station is also the 60th of Colruyt Group's fuel supplier. All the other brands supply CNG in 40 locations. In 7 years’ time, CNG or natural gas has clearly come to stay as the most logical alternative for diesel or petrol. Most CNG stations are situated in Flanders. You can fill up with natural gas in 1 out of 4 towns there. Spurred on by DATS 24, the gas federation and transmission system operators such as Ores in Wallonia have started to catch up.
CNG network systematically expands in Belgium and in Europe
After the inauguration of this 100th CNG station in Heverlee, DATS 24 will open another 15 locations this year. Later this year, it will be possible to fill up with CNG in Wetteren, Basecles, Eupen, Erpe-Mere-, Ieper, Sint-Truiden, Hechtel-Eksel, Wommelgem and Knokke. Colruyt Group's fuel supplier has also submitted several permit applications with the competent authorities to continue expanding its CNG network along the main roads in Wallonia.
By 2020, there should be 170 CNG stations in Belgium. CNG is coming on fast in Europe as well, with ambitious expansion plans in France, Spain, the Netherlands, Germany and Italy.
Natural gas for driving makes our mobility much greener
According to Juan Vazquez, general manager of sector federation Gas.be, natural gas can and will play an important part in greening our mobility. "Driving cars on natural gas is the most dignified alternative for polluting diesel and petrol cars today. They emit up to 31% less CO2 and reduce the emission of fine dust and NOx by 75%. And with the current development of the CNG network, it is becoming feasible for everyone to switch to natural gas."
People looking for a new car justly ask themselves whether to choose for a diesel or petrol car. The desire for greening is increasingly present. An absolute condition is not to lose comfort and user-friendliness. Moreover, not many people are prepared to pay more for a clean car.
"Motorists want to green, but keeping their well-known comfort."— Raf Flebus, DATS 24
"And that's the strength of natural gas for driving or CNG", says Raf Flebus, Business Unit Manager at DATS 24. "The air quality is deteriorating at a fast pace in Belgium, especially in Flanders. Completely justified, the consumer also wants to continue to enjoy the comfort and freedom of movement he is accustomed to. They go hand in hand. CNG cars offer a few major advantages: they are cheaper and can be used everywhere and they contribute substantially to a healthier environment", says Raf Flebus.
Driving on natural gas or electricity
Alternative vehicles such as hybrid cars, electric cars and CNG cars are on the up and up. Late April 2018, the FPS Mobility reported 81.704 hybrid vehicles, 10.960 CNG vehicles and 9.422 electric vehicles on Belgian roads. Natural gas for driving is clearly coming on. The number of orders for CNG cars already largely exceeds the number of registrations in 2017.
Tie Roefs, Executive for Environment and Sustainability of Flemish Brabant, confirms the positive role of CNG in making our mobility more sustainable: “Driving on CNG is one of the many links in the transition to sustainable mobility. We also encourage sustainable means of transport such as bicycles and public transport for short and long travels as much as possible. But if a car is the only option, we feel a CNG car or an electric car is a good alternative for long distances. So we did not hesitate to grant DATS 24 an environmental permit to set up a CNG installation."