Story by the Vermont Business Magazine
Colchester-based NG Advantage LLC, a majority-owned subsidiary of Clean Energy Fuels Corp. (NASDAQ: CLNE), today announced that it has signed an 18 month contract extension with International Paper. Under this extension, NG Advantage will continue delivering clean-burning compressed natural gas (CNG) to International Paper’s Ticonderoga, NY, paper mill using its “virtual or mobile pipeline” of tractor-trailers that deliver 24/7. This is the largest mobile pipeline project in the US and showcases the scalability of NG Advantage’s service to deliver natural gas as an alternative fuel choice for even the largest industrial energy users.
“It’s a pleasure to work with the very innovative people at International Paper and help them meet their environmental and financial goals in a rapidly changing world,” said NG Advantage CEO Tom Evslin. “The service to the IP mill demonstrates that our trucked CNG platform has successfully been scaled to meet demand which would have formerly required a special pipeline extension.”
International Paper had long been planning a switch to natural gas to displace much of the #6 fuel oil used at the Ticonderoga mill in order to substantially reduce its environmental footprint and enjoy the price stability of the domestic fuel. The mill had originally planned to pay much of the cost of a traditional pipeline extension from Vermont to Ticonderoga, NY, and sought bids for trucked CNG only for interim service until the pipeline arrived. However, the deal with Vermont Gas fell through earlier this year because of cost increases involved with bringing the pipeline from Middlbury, Vermont.
NG Advantage, which was the first company to provide virtual pipeline service in the US, received the contact for that interim service in 2014.
A mill as large as Ticonderoga requires a customized end-to-end energy supply chain. NG Advantage designed new hardware, developed new procedures, and built extensions to its cloud-based SCADA (control software). The result was deliveries beginning on schedule in May of 2015 with NG Advantage providing the mill with approximately eighteen trailer loads of clean, inexpensive natural gas daily.
International Paper canceled plans for the pipeline because of escalating delays and costs and issued an RFP for long-term virtual pipeline service to keep natural gas in their fuel mix. After evaluating bids, International Paper chose to extend its existing contract with NG Advantage.
International Paper is the seventh paper mill and the twenty-sixth location to contract with NG Advantage. Natural gas delivered 24/7 by truck gives plants an experience much like being on a traditional pipeline without the long term capital commitment of a pipeline extension. Burning natural gas instead of oil products reduces CO2 emissions by 26%; substituting natural gas for coal reduces CO2 by about 50%. Natural gas use also eliminates almost all Sulphur and particulate emissions and enables a substantial reduction in nitrous oxides.
About NG Advantage LLC:
NG Advantage(link is external) is a U.S.-based mid/downstream provider and the leader in the new “virtual pipeline” industry of trucking compressed natural gas (CNG) in the U.S. NG Advantage’s virtual pipeline service brings the economic and environmental benefits of North American natural gas to large institutions and industrial customers without access to a pipeline. The Company’s current customers include large regional hospitals, paper mills, asphalt facilities, food processors, industrial dry cleaners, LDCs, and manufacturing facilities. Facilitated by the purchase of a controlling interest in the company by Clean Energy Fuels(link is external) (NASDAQ: CLNE), NG Advantage is expanding its service area nationwide. For more information on NG Advantage, see www.ngadvantage.com(link is external).
About Clean Energy:
Clean Energy Fuels Corp(link is external). (NASDAQ: CLNE) is the leading provider of natural gas fuel for transportation in North America. We build and operate compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueling stations; manufacture CNG and LNG equipment and technologies for ourselves and other companies; develop renewable natural gas (RNG) production facilities; and deliver more CNG, LNG and Redeem RNG fuel than any other company in the U.S. For more information, visit www.cleanenergyfuels.com(link is external). See more at: https://www.cleanenergyfuels.com/(link is external).
About International Paper:
International Paper(link is external) (NYSE: IP) is a global leader in packaging and paper with manufacturing operations in North America, Europe, Latin America, Russia, Asia and North Africa. Its businesses include industrial and consumer packaging along with uncoated papers and pulp. Headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., the company employs approximately 58,000 people and is strategically located in more than 24 countries serving customers worldwide. International Paper net sales for 2014 were $24 billion. For more information about International Paper, its products and stewardship efforts, visit internationalpaper.com(link is external).