A new report from Navigant Research has found that the total number of natural gas refueling stations, including compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG), is expected to reach almost 39,300 locations globally by 2026.
The report examines the global market for the deployment of natural gas refueling infrastructure, including an analysis of key deployment factors, with forecasts segmented by CNG and LNG, through 2026.
Since late 2014, the production of crude oil has outpaced demand, triggering a sustained collapse in world oil prices, which have remained mostly below $50 per barrel. As a result, these low prices have put pressure on the market for natural gas vehicles and the corresponding refueling infrastructure.
“Despite the decline in oil prices, stricter emissions and fuel economy regulations mean that natural gas remains a very attractive alternative to gasoline and diesel in many regions and vehicle applications where electrification is not a practical alternative,” says Sam Abuelsamid, senior research analyst with Navigant Research. “While slowing growth in China is having an impact on vehicle sales, the number of natural gas refueling stations globally is still projected to swell at a 4.4 percent compound annual growth rate during the next decade.”
Several market drivers continue to make natural gas an appealing proposition in the next decade, especially for larger trucks and buses, where electrification is not as practical, and natural gas operation can reduce the costs associated with diesel emissions after-treatment. According to the report, tightening emissions regulations, particularly for diesel engines, are also expected to push fleets toward natural gas conversions, with refueling infrastructure to follow.
An executive summary of the report is available for free download on the Navigant Research website.