PMV Middle East
INFRASTRUCTURE AND ECOSYSTEMS, NOT TECHNOLOGY, ARE THE LIMITING FACTORS FOR ENERGY TRANSITION
MOURAD HEDNA, UD TRUCKS
Emission standards: As manufacturers, we are willing to do everything to reduce emissions from internal combustion engine vehicles while supporting the complete transition to clean energy.
We are happy with the success of Euro 4 regulations in the UAE, and the adoption of Euro 5 standards in Qatar. The momentum is good, and we look forward to the introduction of Euro 6 standards in Morocco and Euro 4 standards in Oman and Kenya.
Energy transition: There are different long-term solutions for sustainable road transportation. From a manufacturers’ perspective, technology is not a limitation as we continue to develop, perform customer trials and optimize trucks running on alternative fuels.
The big challenges for successful energy transition is the development of ecosystems and ensuring that alternative fuels, whether electricity or hydrogen, is produced from renewable energy and not fossil fuels.
Electric trucks, for example, will need sufficient range for an entire day or shift and fast charging infrastructure for recharging when they’re not in operation. Stakeholders will also need a plan for the disposal, recycling and reuse of batteries.
While hydrogen is a more feasible fuel for long-haul transportation, the source of hydrogen should be renewable energy or green hydrogen; otherwise, it defeats the purpose of the transition to clean energy.
With regard to biofuels, sufficient availability of feedstock is a concern.
Most manufacturers have trucks demonstrating the applications of all these fuels. However, the issues related to their widespread adoption can only be addressed if policy makers and transport authorities work in collaboration with vehicle manufacturers.
MARCO TORTA, IVECO
Emission standards: The UAE was the first in GCC to introduce Euro 4 standards and is likely the first to move to Euro 6. The introduction of Euro 5 standards in Qatar is another step in the right direction. We welcome higher emission regulations as have a strong product lineup compliant with Euro 6 standards. The only question is how long it will take for every country in the region have
Energy transition: As demand for alternative energy increases, we need to determine when to enter mass production. I don’t think manufacturers are ready to scale up because of the lack of infrastructure.
It’s encouraging that the UAE and Saudi Arabia are investing in electric vehicle charging infrastructure for passenger cars. We hope to test the waters with the launch of the Iveco Daily electric van in 2023. However, I think it’ll take at least 10–15 years for the widespread use of electric trucks in this region.
DOUGLAS RANKINE, CHEVRON
Energy transition: At Chevron, we believe the future of energy is lower carbon, and that affordable, reliable, ever-cleaner energy is essential to achieving a more prosperous world. Chevron intends to leverage our strengths to deliver lower carbon energy to a growing world.
Our primary objective is to deliver higher returns, lower carbon. Our differentiated energy transition strategy is to lower the carbon intensity of our operations and grow lower carbon businesses. Chevron intends to be a leader in efficient and lower-carbon production of traditional energy – in high demand today and for years to come – while growing the lower-carbon businesses that will be a bigger part of the future.
Chevron has the capabilities, assets and customer relationships to continue to develop the affordable, reliable, and evercleaner energy that enables human progress. Achieving change at scale requires continued partnership and progress across the energy system in technology, policy, regulations, and offset markets.
BAHATTIN TOPCU,FORD TRUCKS
Emission standards: Higher emission standards are necessary to protect the environment, and we support the transition to Euro 5 and Euro 6. The challenge we face in the Middle East and Africa is the lack of homogeneity in emission standards, which reduces the efficiency of our production and stock allocation. To achieve uniform standards, we realise that many countries in the region will need to upgrade their refineries, fuel and transport infrastructure, but accelerating this process and having fuel compatibility will only benefit fleet operations and the environment.
Energy transition: Ford Trucks and several European manufacturers are signatories to a joint declaration by the European Automobile Manufacturers Association that by 2040 all new trucks sold need to be fossil free in order to reach carbon-neutrality by 2050.
Our analysis indicates the most feasible alternative fuels will be batteries and hydrogen. Electric trucks will have applications in urban areas, such as waste compactors, and hydrogen trucks will be a better solution for long-haul transportation. Within the Middle East and Africa, we see interest from government departments and municipalities to test electric vehicles and participate in different pilot programmes. However, the commercialization of electric vehicles will not happen until the full development of the charging infrastructure, which will require significant investment. Customers, too, will face high purchasing costs initially after electric trucks are introduced. To make the investment attractive, we may need to introduce different financing schemes and business models such as leasing and rental.
OLAF PETERSEN, DAIMLER CV
Emission standards: We are in favour of higher emission standards and have over fulfilled the requirements for emission standards in the region; however, the priority should be to improve fuel quality and have ultra-low-sulphur diesel available across the region to incentivize manufacturers and customers to adopt higher emission standards and upgrade fleets.
Energy transition: Daimler Truck is fully committed to the Paris Climate Protection Agreement, and our goals include Co2neutral production at all our manufacturing facilities worldwide by 2039 and Co2-neutral transport on the road by 2050.
We have a two-pronged strategy for product development: electric trucks for distances up to, say, 500km, and hydrogen trucks for longer distances. Following the success of the battery-electric e-actros, we will start series production of the battery-electric eeconic this year, and we aim to start series production of our first hydrogen truck in 2027. In the lightduty category, we generated interest among UAE customers last year at the WETEX expo and Dubai Expo 2020. The second generation of the vehicle will enter series production this year. The path to achieving our carbon-neutral goals, although long, is promising when we look at the recent growth in the electric car market. Of course, the electrification of trucks will need more time, but there’re several positive factors enabling this trend, such as the reduction in weight and price of battery packs and increase in energy density and range. While these technological advancements help reduce costs, governments may need to offer certain subsidies to accelerate the adoption of electric trucks, similar to those offered for electric cars.