"DRAMATIC" Emission Reductions From Propane Autogas School Buses

Emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx), one of the biggest challenges to air quality in the United States, are as much as 96% lower when a school bus is fueled by propane autogas rather than diesel. That’s just one of the findings in a study recently published by West Virginia University’s Center for Alternative Fuels Engines and Emissions (CAFEE). Reduction of NOx is important because these emissions are regulated by the federal government and are a predominant non-attainment concern in many areas, the author of the study adds.

Propane Autogas School Buses dramatically reducing harmful emissions in USA and increasingly popular among tax payers for lower total cost of ownership reports BPN the propane industry's trusted source for news and info since 1939  Sept 2019“NOx is one of the primary precursors to ground-level ozone, or smog,” Ross Ryskamp, associate director, testing and development, with CAFEE, tells BPN. “The whole nation is making a big push to bring down NOx emissions from vehicles.”

For the study, CAFEE completed two types of tests at different times on four Blue Bird school buses—two fueled by propane autogas and two fueled by diesel. The buses were nearly identical apart from the engine, transmission, and mileage.

When a 2015 propane autogas school bus and a 2014 diesel school bus were tested over a route that included both city and highway roads, the propane autogas bus’s NOx emissions were 95% lower than the diesel model’s. When the two buses were tested over a stop-and-go route, the propane autogas bus’s NOx emissions were 96% lower. “The stop-and-go route was designed to simulate how school buses are used,” Ryskamp says. The findings were confirmed in subsequent testing that used a 2017 propane autogas bus and a 2017 diesel bus.

“We made sure the aftertreatment on the newer diesel bus was conditioned so the test was fair,” Ryskamp notes. “The older buses and the newer ones showed similar results, with the propane buses having lower NOx emissions than diesel. That’s especially true on low-load, low-speed routes.”

“Diesel has an inherent disadvantage in reducing NOx emissions before they go out the tailpipe due to the lean air-to-fuel ratios they operate at and current exhaust aftertreatment technology,” Ryskamp explains. “Low-load, idle, and stop-and-go operation can make it difficult for diesel exhaust aftertreatment systems to mitigate these emissions, especially when the exhaust aftertreatment system is not fully warmed up.”

Reducing those emissions from diesel engines has another effect in the real world, he adds:

“All vehicles—propane, gasoline, and diesel—have come a long way in the last 20 years in terms of reducing harmful emissions. But when you look at the exhaust aftertreatment side and compare the single catalytic converter on propane or gasoline vehicles to the diesel exhaust aftertreatment system that includes a diesel oxidation catalyst, a diesel particulate filter, and a selective catalytic reduction system, propane and gasoline vehicles have a much simpler, but effective, technology to treat emissions,” he notes. “Diesel exhaust aftertreatment is much more vast; it is a system with many more parts and much greater cost and complexity.”

This study, “In-Use Emissions and Performance Testing of Propane-Fueled Engines,” was commissioned by the Propane Education & Research Council (PERC). A link to the study, together with other information about propane autogas school buses, can be found on PERC’s website at propane.com/propane-products/buses/. — Steve Relyea

Propane Showcased During "National Clean Energy Week" As Clean American Energy

(September 23, 2019) — Activities are being held across the country through the end of September to help showcase propane as a clean, eco-friendly fuel in the eyes of policymakers. The activities will culminate during National Clean Energy Week (NCEW), with state and national policymakers meeting in Washington, D.C., to discuss clean energy solutions.

Propane America's Clean Energy is showcased at 2019 National Clean Energy Week as National Propane Gas ASsociation is first-time sponsor reports BPN the propane industry's leading source for news and info since 1939For the first time, the National Propane Gas Association (NPGA) is a sponsor of NCEW 2019. The association has been organizing activities around the event and is encouraging others in the industry to coordinate activities with NPGA. During an all-day policy symposium that is among the events to be held in Washington, NPGA’s senior vice president of advocacy and technical services, Michael Caldarera, will be a featured speaker.

Participation in the 3rd annual NCEW is one of NPGA’s four “90-Day Criticals” for the third quarter of 2019. The goal: to showcase propane among America’s clean, alternative energy sources.

“This is NPGA’s first year as a sponsor in National Clean Energy Week, which is now in its third year,” NPGA’s deputy counsel, regulatory affairs, Sarah Reboli, tells BPN. “Our leadership chose to participate because the strategy to combine events throughout the country that build up to a series of discussions in Washington, D.C., is an excellent way to showcase how propane—in every state—can serve as a clean energy solution while bringing the examples back to our nation’s capital to show major policymakers.”

NCEW was launched in 2017. The organizers of the event explain, “NCEW brings together government officials, industry associations, businesses, nonprofits, and advocates in the clean energy space for events in Washington, D.C. and across America to showcase how they are helping to make the clean energy sector stronger, and influence the discussion around responsible clean energy solutions that directly address America’s need for abundant, reliable forms of energy.” Today, NCEW has more than 100 participating organizations.

The event has been recognized by governors across the country. The organizers of NCEW report that 29 governors, both Republican and Democratic, issued state proclamations recognizing last year’s event. As of Sept. 18, 19 states have recognized NCEW 2019, and many more are expected to do so closer to the event, as they did last year. “This year the number will be closer to 40,” Reboli says. “That shows the momentum building under National Clean Energy Week.”

As well as sponsoring NCEW and participating in its events, Reboli says, “NPGA is working with the propane industry and state associations to highlight the use and advantages of propane to meet the country’s wide array of energy needs while reducing emissions.”

For example, NPGA’s activities include showcasing autogas fleets and conversion kits across all types of combustible engines by partnering with the Ohio Propane Gas Association at the Midwest Green Transportation Forum & Expo and by conducting a tour and interview with a shop that converts engines of nearly every type to propane. “We are working with several companies to host tours and meet-and-greets, participate in interviews, and place op-eds in their local newspapers,” she adds.

As NCEW 2019 nears, all propane businesses can join in and “spread the news on propane’s role in meeting America’s energy needs,” Reboli says. She suggests they participate by sharing messaging from NPGA’s website (npga.org) and the association’s social media platforms.

“The heart of our message is that propane is part of the solution to America’s energy and environmental ambitions,” Reboli concludes. “We’re showcasing propane’s uses and advantages to policymakers at the local level through events at different places in the country as well as state and national officials that participate in the events in Washington, D.C. It’s crucial that we use National Clean Energy Week to demonstrate that propane has a place in the national dialogue about American energy.”
For more information about National Clean Energy Week, visit nationalcleanenergyweek.org.

For information about engaging in activities in support of NCEW, contact the NPGA office at (202) 466-7200, email Sarah Reboli at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or visit nationalcleanenergyweek.org/#learn  —Steve Relyea

(This article was origninally published August 19, 2019 in honor of National Clean Energy Week (NCEW) and has been updated for this post.)

Stephen Kaminski Named NPGA President and CEO

(September 20, 2019) — Stephen T. Kaminski has been selected as the new president and chief executive officer of the National Propane Gas Association (NPGA). He will officially begin his service to the industry on October 28.

Stephen T Kaminski named new President and CEO National Propane Gas Association reports Butane-Propane News Sept. 20 2019 BPN is the propane industry's trusted source for news and info since 1939Kaminski currently serves as chief executive officer of the American Association of Poison Control Centers, which is a trade association representing the country’s 55 regional poison control centers. Previously, he served as general counsel and senior vice president of the American Humane Association as well as serving as vice president of Discovery Communications. He was an associate with the law firm of Covington & Burling, LLP, and he also was a Judicial Clerk to the Honorable Arthur J. Gajarsa of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, Washington, D.C.
Throughout his career, Kaminski has had significant experience in successful advocacy before Congress, federal agencies, and working to scale up state initiatives; implementing national public affairs campaigns; overseeing standards and certification programs; designing, building, and launching new programs and tools for members and new revenue-generating programs for associations; building deep ties with partners and relevant stakeholders; and overseeing internal operations and governance.

Kaminski is originally from rural Michigan. He has a degree in chemical engineering from Johns Hopkins University, graduating with highest honors, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. In addition, he holds an Executive Certificate in Non-Profit Leadership from Duke University. He has a 13-year-old daughter and lives in Arlington, Virginia. In his spare time enjoys cooking, playing soccer, and watching football.

32nd World LPG Forum: Bringing The Best Of LPG To Amsterdam

32nd World LPG Forum Brings Propane Leaders around the globe to Amsterdam Conference Sept 24-27 2019 reports media sponsor Butane-Propane News the propane industry's trusted source for news and information since 1939

By Mimi Brasseur… (September 19, 2019) — The World LPG Association (WLPGA) and Liquid Gas Europe are joining together September 24-27 to bring the largest LPG event in the world, the 32nd World LPG Forum & 2019 European Congress, to Amsterdam. This influential event combines a high-level conference, a major exhibition, and a choice of dedicated small summits and dynamic side events that cover the entire industry.

During the event, delegates will have access to five key sessions that follow the theme of the event and the roundtable session, “Energy in Transition.” “Session 1: Supply in Transition” will look at the supply growth for LPG worldwide. Demand for LPG is also growing at an impressive rate, which will be analyzed during “Session 2: Demand in Transition.” “Session 3: LPG in a Digital World” will discuss the need for the LPG industry to increase its use of the latest digital technologies. In “Session 4: Communications: From Reactive to Proactive,” hear from communications specialists on how the LPG industry can improve its outreach and strengthen its voice throughout the world. Finally, “Session 5: From Transition to Destination: What Does the Future Hold?”, will gather the current and incoming presidents and vice presidents of WLPGA and Liquid Gas Europe to offer their views on the future of LPG.
32nd World LPG Forum and and Liquid Gas Europe bring global propane energy leaders together in Amsterdam reports major media sponsor Butane-Propane News Sept 24-27 2019
Between sessions, delegates also have the option to explore the biggest exhibition ever, which will host over 200 exhibiting companies and their booths, including the Autogas Village at the entrance of the venue, which will display LPG cars and tanks.

largest global gathering of propane leaders at the 32nd World LPG Forum in Amsterdam reports BPN the propane industry's leading source for news and info since 1939GLOBAL TECHNOLOGY CONFERENCE
Successful marketing and implementation of new technologies, equipment, and ideas from around the world will be showcased at this global conference dedicated to technology and innovation in the LPG industry. The 12th Global Technology Conference (GTC) will be held Tuesday, Sept. 24.

The role of LPG in improving health outcomes, in accordance with World Health Organization Guidelines for Emissions Reductions for Health, will be the focus of this event. The third LPG for Development Summit (LPG4Dev), co-organized with the Global LPG Partnership, will take place Sept. 24.

Opportunities for autogas at a global level will be highlighted during the first international Autogas Day. It will provide an exceptional opportunity to hear and share the latest autogas innovations, marketing situations, experiences, as well as networking opportunities. Autogas Day is set for Friday, Sept. 27.

32nd World LPG Forum in Amsterdam Sept 24-27 Brings together Global Propane Leaders To discuss future of clean energy reports media sponsor Butane-Propane News the propane industry's leading source for news and info since 1939
An exceptional opportunity to network with your global peers and a chance to learn more about the positive impact and influence women have on the LPG industry will be offered during this vibrant exchange of best practices. The Women in LPG (WINLPG) Knowledge Exchange will be held Thursday, Sept. 26.

The LPG industry will be engaged in order to solve the proposed challenge for this year: Safety & Training. The World LPG Challenge ’19, a first for the World LPG Forum & European Congress, is a call to companies and startups. The winners will be announced Thursday, Sept. 26, during “Session 3: LPG in the Digital World.”

These are intensive roundtable discussions, separate from the regular sessions, that delegates can register for on a first-come, first-served basis. On Thursday, September 26, three parallel Power Plays are scheduled: “Making LPG the New Marine Alternative Fuel,” “Making Safety Interesting,” and “Taking BioLPG to the Next Level.”
32nd World LPG Forum and European Congress host largest gathering of propane energy and autogas leaders in Amsterdam reports BPN the propane industry's most trusted source for news and info since 1939
This two-part workshop is designed to increase awareness of cyber risk and fill in the knowledge gaps for executive and non-executive and information and non-information technology staff. Delivered and facilitated by HudsonCyber, along with AON, the workshop includes a general cyber risk awareness briefing followed by an interactive exercise.

On this stage in the middle of the exhibition area, companies and individuals will present on various subjects on Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 25-26. The stage will also host the Snapshots presentations dedicated to LPG in Humanitarian settings, LPG’s contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals, and the potential for LPG in heating.

A number of outstanding social and networking gatherings will also be held throughout the week. On Sunday, Sept. 22, WLPGA associations can attend the Associations Executive Cocktail. The following day, Monday, Sept. 23, WLPGA and Liquid Gas Europe members are invited to the Members’ Dinner. Tuesday, Sept. 24, is the official opening of the exhibition. Here, delegates can gather together in the exhibition hall for drinks and snacks during the Exhibition Opening Cocktail. Finally, the official event Gala Dinner is being held on Wednesday, Sept. 25, where registered guests are invited to enjoy an elegant dinner in the Concertgebouw.

If you would like more information about the World LPG Forum, visit the website at www.worldlpgforum-aegpl2019.com/ or contact Esther Assous, WLPGA events director, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Don’t miss out on this great opportunity to introduce yourself to the industry and to learn how you can get involved.

Mimi Brasseur is communications assistant for the World LPG Association (WLPGA).

Rick 4.0 Approaches as Closeout Nears For Roldan 3.0

(September 18, 2019) — In software versioning parlance, National Propane Gas Association (NPGA) president and CEO, Rick Roldan, observes he will soon transition from 3.0 to 4.0. The former is his tenure at NPGA, the latter what comes next. Roldan concludes his 25 years of service to the association at the end of this year. Rather than lament the departure, he’s eyeing new options, professional and volunteer, and expressing “boundless gratitude” for this two and a half decades in the propane industry, including 18 years at the helm of NPGA. His outlook echoes that of country music performer, actor, and businessman Jimmy Dean, who noted, “I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.”
After 25 years as CEO of National Propane Gas Association Rick Roldan is retiring reports BPN the propane industry's trusted source for news and information since 1939
“It’s been a wonderful run,” says the native Coloradan, who describes the transition to a new, and as yet unannounced, CEO as “a mutual move.” He adds, “I was fortunate to work with quality people every day.” Roldan was named president and CEO of NPGA in March 2002. His involvement with the industry group, however, began in 1994 with his selection as the founding executive director of the former Propane Vehicle Council. In 1995 he was appointed vice president of government relations. Roldan is an active member of the Natural Gas Roundtable and the Washington Industrial Roundtable.

“It was a tremendous honor to be named as Dan Myers’ successor and to be given the task of relocating the association to Washington, D.C.,” he says of his elevation to NPGA’s top administrative post. “Most of the Chicago staff had no interest in relocating, so we had to essentially hire a new team. One of the things of which I am most proud is the quality of people that we were able to recruit and their genuine commitment to the propane gas industry. Advocacy becomes a lot easier if you truly believe in your product. Our staff has always had that belief, which is probably why we were able to enact more bills than any other association or industry our size.”

Regarding industry expertise among NPGA membership, Roldan observes, “Call it luck or providence, but NPGA has always had a knack for picking the right leaders at the right time. Each year, our former board chairmen get together and talk about industry issues at the 50,000-foot level. When I look around the room at those meetings, I am struck by the wisdom and leadership experience of the people in the room. Their insights have been invaluable to me over the years.”

Who are some of those leaders? “If you forced me to identify some standouts, I would point to the winners of the NPGA Distinguished Service Award. Milford Therrell, for example, was the driving force behind the creation of PERC. Gene Bissell guided our relocation to Washington, D.C. The technical expertise of Bill McHenry, Sam McTier, and Mike Gorham are unparalleled.”
Rick Roldan retires after 25 years as Nat'l Propane Gas Assoc CEO reports BPN the propane industry's trusted source for news and info since 1939
Regarding his own view of association leadership, the University of Colorado, Boulder graduate and CU Presidential Scholar identifies being open and clear about what is to be accomplished as the foundation. “That is why I like volunteer-driven strategic plans. Establish your goals; allocate resources to achieve those goals in a reasonable time frame. Then understand that you are on the hook for getting the job done.

“The ‘no surprise rule’ is something we all practice. When our chairman travels to a particular state, it is important for him to be aware of any issues or controversies that may exist. Likewise, when I attend a board meeting, I want to be prepared for any issue that may arise. The no surprise rule is a close cousin of the transparency rule, which holds that bad news doesn’t get better with age. Get it out in the open, then deal with it head-on.”

Roldan acknowledges both challenges and opportunities for the propane industry, with “the important challenges the industry will face already well known to us: the drive toward renewable energy at the expense of low-carbon alternatives; policies and proposals like zero-net energy; the ‘electrify everything’ movement; the Green New Deal; and the hardening of sentiment against any fossil fuel, regardless of its potential for substantial emissions reductions.” Further, “for nearly a half century energy independence has been a national goal, for both economic and national security reasons. It is ironic that, having achieved the goal, there are those who would actually take us backward.”

At the same time, as these issues are faced, propane’s greatest advantage is that the industry “has a great story to tell,” he says. That story includes: “we are part of America’s global energy dominance. Propane is flexible. Our infrastructure is not stationary, thus immovable, nor is it susceptible to cyberattack as our competitors are. Propane is clean and green. We are neither a greenhouse gas—like natural gas—nor a groundwater contaminant—like fueloil. Our fuel is substantially more efficient than electricity in direct-flame applications.”

In addition, “We invest, through PERC, in technology that will make our product even better. Our industry is part of the fabric of America. Our members have deep roots in nearly every community in America.” Roldan adds he is optimistic about the future. “We will excel provided everyone who is a part of this industry—members and employees alike—become part of the effort to tell this story in their own towns and communities.”

Early Interest
He recalls he caught the statecraft bug early and that his hardworking parents were always supportive of his budding interest in government and politics, “even though most people at the time didn’t think a political science degree could put you on a solid career path. When I was 16, they paid to send me to a weeklong program in Washington where we interacted directly with members of Congress and administration officials like the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. I knew I would be back!”

His early career was more about politics than government, a period he refers to as Rick 1.0. “I was a department manager at the National Republican Congressional Committee, 1986 campaign cycle, and a division director, director of party development, for the Republican National Committee in the 1988 cycle. One of the great things about Washington is that upward mobility can be lightning fast if you’re willing to put in the hours, including extensive travel.”

One of Roldan’s fondest memories of that time in the nation’s capital was receiving an invitation to attend a gathering at the White House. The country’s president was fellow westerner Ronald Reagan. More than 30 years later he still has that invitation, and the envelope it was mailed in. “I kept it because it documents the possibility of lightning-fast upward mobility,” he says. “I arrived in D.C. on Jan. 3, 1983, a kid from a steel town in southern Colorado, Pueblo. A little more than three years later, April 1986, I received a formal invitation to the White House.”

The invitation being memorable enough, by chance the young man from Pueblo met and came face-to-face with the transformative, 40th U.S. president and leader of the free world. “That was the event at which President Reagan entered the East Room through a door opposite of where most of us thought he would enter. There I was, and there he was. He was perhaps the most engaging person I ever met.”

Roldan went on to serve in the administration of President George H.W. Bush from 1989 to 1993, Rick 2.0, as deputy assistant secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management, acting as one of the principal stewards of the nation’s land, mineral, and renewable resources. He also served on the staff of the White House Conference on Climate Change.

Looking forward, he says the future, Rick 4.0, is promising and flexible, with plans to remain in Washington. He is an active member of the Cathedral of Saint Matthew Parish and a past president of the parish council. “I have always tried to be active in parish life. I am looking forward to having more time to expand this portion of my routine. I don’t know what form this will take. In charitable work, need always outpaces resources, so finding a meaningful role should not be too difficult.”

And there’s music and cooking. “I did play violin. Unfortunately, my dog hated it. Each time I played she did this Shakespearean death act. After a 15-year friendship, Bella died last January. I intend to return to the violin very soon. Yes, I love to cook because I believe that food has a way of bringing people together. This is really important in an age where people are glued to their screens. It has also been a good stress reliever for me. It is a way to turn your attention away from the pressures of the day. This is the hobby that must always be paired with a good gym membership.”

For the remainder of his tenure at NPGA, Roldan is working to ensure a seamless leadership transition at the association. “I am hopeful the transition will work out just fine,” he says. “I want everyone to know I am so deeply grateful for the opportunity to serve NPGA. My abiding hope is for a future of growth and prosperity for this great industry.” — John Needham