Green Grass Limited, GGL, has stepped up efforts to encourage more motorists embrace the use of Compressed Natural Gas as vehicular fuel, with the construction of additional six CNG stations in the country.
GGL, a Joint Venture company of the Nigerian Gas Company, NGC, is a subsidiary of Nigerian National Petroleum Company, NNPC, and Nipco Plc, noted that the CNG auto gas will lead to the effective utilisation of the abundant gas resources in the country.
CNG which is fast becoming the preferred auto fuel in developed and developing countries in view of its environmental friendliness through the reduction of carbon emissions, is currently being promoted as the preferred auto fuel undertaken in Nigeria by GGL.
The gas company has already built six CNG stations in Benin, Edo State and two kits fitment workshop.
Speaking at the just-concluded NOG 2012 conference in Abuja, the Managing Director, Nipco, who is also a director of GGL Mr. Venkataraman Venkatapathy, said the Hilux pick-up gas demo vehicle attracted a lot of interests and enthusiasm at the conference.
Already, in anticipation of more motorists converting to the use gas, GGL said it has also embarked on the building of more outlets to meet the expected high demand, promising that some of the stations will soon commence operations.
Venkatapathy noted that with over 14 million vehicles running on CNG worldwide, with a projection of additional 20 million by 2020, Nigeria can key into this anticipated growth by developing its existing natural gas resources.
According to him, the CNG programme offers dual fuel option to users through operational flexibility by running the vehicle either on gas or on petrol simply by flicking a switch installed on the dashboard.
Furthermore, he noted that there are experienced fitment workers at the workshops that will ensure a seamless conversion of liquid fuels vehicles to gas powered ones.
As part of the campaign, he said GGL gave taxi operators in Benin the opportunity to convert their cars free so they could experience the benefits of running their vehicles on gas, while also participating in a number of exhibitions to promote the use gas as auto fuel.
“Our CNG team has also successfully converted Edo state government busses to run on CNG and diesel on a hybrid saving 50 percent of the fuel cost for the state run company,” Venkatapathy disclosed.
Aside from constructing CNG stations in some select states, he said GGL has also completed laying of over 40 kilometers of gas pipeline to supply piped natural gas (PNG) to commercial and industrial companies along the Benin-Warri Highway.
He noted that apart from being a cleaner fuel, gas is also much cheaper than petrol by over 60 percent and by over 70 percent in the case of diesel, based on the prevailing pump price of petrol at N97 and N165 per litre compared with gas at N55 per standard cubic meter.
Besides, gas powered vehicles have lower maintenance costs due to the absence of lead in the product, thus eliminating the need for frequent cleaning of spark plugs.
With regard to refueling, he said the process is very safe, as the cylinder is made from a special steel alloy with no welded joints, adding that at the workshop every cylinder is tested according to international standards before being installed.