The appetite for natural gas has extended into areas without extensive pipeline networks through trucking the fuel in the form of compressed natural gas (CNG). It is becoming a growing business, particularly for large industrial businesses.
Irving Oil Operations Ltd. in mid-May completed its first truck delivery of CNG to frozen food provider McCain Foods’ operations in Easton, ME. Irving called the Toronto-based McCain one of its newest CNG customers among some 6,000 it serves daily.
“Truck-delivered natural gas is at the leading edge of natural gas technology, and it represents the most efficient way to deliver the benefits of natural gas to regions not supplied by pipelines,” said Irving CEO Paul Browning. “This represents the opportunity for an alternative energy source for our large industrial customers and the potential of significant energy costs savings.”
As part of an agreement announced last March, McCain is switching all of its plants to natural gas, said Jean-Pierre Rajotte, vice president for North American manufacturing. At the time, Darren Gillis, general manager at Irving Energy, called the availability of natural gas for industrial customers in the Maritimes and Maine “good news for these companies as well as for our region’s economy.”
As a long-time supplier of heating oil, propane and diesel to homes and businesses throughout New England and eastern Canada, Irving Energy makes more than a million trucking deliveries annually, the company said. “Every day, our employees make more than 6,000 deliveries by truck. Delivered natural gas is an extension of our existing capabilities and great for customers who don’t currently have access to the natural gas pipeline.” Browning said.
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