20 Dec 2010 09:55

Zhejiang eyes 55,000 natural gas vehicles by 2015

Shanghai. December 20. INTERFAX-CHINA - Zhejiang Province intends to put natural gas-powered vehicles on its roads in 2011, state media reported Dec. 19, citing a senior provincial official's comments at a recent industry forum.

According to Xinhua news agency, Zhang Fuping, director of the Zhejiang Provincial Energy Bureau's Coal, Oil and Gas Department, said that natural gas vehicles can reduce carbon emissions by 40 percent while emitting almost no sulfur dioxide and dust.

The Zhejiang Environmental Protection Bureau noted that 26 out of the province's 32 cities have suffered from heavy acid rain primarily due to pollution from automobile exhaust.

Zhang said that the province will encourage private car owners to retrofit their vehicles for both natural gas and gasoline/diesel consumption.

He said that Zhejiang plans to have 55,000 natural gas vehicles, 155 filling stations to service them, by 2015. By 2020, the province hopes to increase those numbers to 135,000 vehicles and 320 stations.

Zhang noted that Huzhou City has retrofitted over 600 taxis to run on natural gas.

According to local statistics, Zhejiang had 4.33 million vehicles on its roads as of the end of 2009.