Dangote begins conversion of vehicles from diesel to natural gas

CNG-Refueling-Los-Angeles-California-300x22018 June 2013, Lagos – A major leap has been recorded in the ongoing efforts at providing compressed natural gas as alternative automobile fuel.

Sagas Energy Company Limited, the pivot of the new technology in Africa, has commenced the conversion of heavy-duty trucks for use of gas as fuel.

Of the 5,000 trucks belonging to Dantrans, the haulage arm of the Dangote group which were scheduled for conversion as at the time of this report, about 200 have been successfully converted to the new system for the trucks to be able to run on both gas and diesel (dual fuel usage).

The conversion ceremony, held in Lagos and witnessed by top officials of Sagas, Nigeria Gas Company, NGC, and the partnering Prins Autogas West Africa Limited, was in furtherance of the execution of a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, signed three months ago between Sagas and the NGC.

Under the arrangement, the NGC, a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, is to exclusively supply Sagas Compressed natural Gas, CNG, for 20 years while Sagas converts PMS and diesel engine vehicles with kits to adapt the engines to the use of gas as obtained elsewhere outside the African continent.

Journalists and guests were conducted round the conversion centre at Ikeja by the Chief Operating Officer of Sagas Energy Company Limited, Henry Van Tienen, where the conversion process was going on, with an already converted truck test-driven to the admiration of all present.

Tienen explained that the conversion was a novel technology in Africa and that the use of gas either as alternative fuel or a mix blend with diesel has advantages over any other fuel currently in use.

He stated that Sagas would source gas from the NGC through its vast network of pipelines and compress it to a cheaper, cleaner and sustainable alternative fuel or dual fuel for profitable business.

According to him, with the kick-off of the conversion, Nigerians are in for a new technology that would help in conserving fuel, deploy the abundant natural gas into good use with a cleaner environment.

He disclosed that conversion centres would be established at various points across the federation while the gas filing stations would be located at the fuel filing stations through accredited dealers scattered across the country.

Tienen said the use of the new technology is safe, convenient, cheaper and more efficient, and that as time goes on most Nigerians would prefer the technology to the tradition fuel.

Speaking at the ceremony, Chairman of Sagas, Sani Dangote, expressed happiness at the commencement of the vehicle conversion soon after the agreement was signed with the NGC, saying the ceremony was meant to demonstrate to the public the capability of Sagas to deliver as promised during the agreement signing.

The Sagas boss disclosed that 5000 trucks would be converted within a year and that the kit to convert 1,000 are already on ground and advised commercial vehicle owners as well as in industrial and private owners to avail themselves of the benefits of the new technology.

In his remark, the Managing Director of NGC, Mr. Saidu Mohammed, described the agreement as part of the gas revolution agenda of the government, saying the nation has enough gas and that it was a good thing that the gas is being domesticated for commercial use.

He stated that NGC with a network of about 1,500 km gas pipeline, Nigerians would be able to get affordable gas as fuel, safe and devoid of environmental pollution.

– This Day

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