EghtesadOnline: In May a website was introduced by the National Iranian Oil Products Distribution Company, where certain vehicles can register for free conversion of their vehicles into compressed natural gas hybrids.
So far 16,000 applications have been approved, director of NIOPDC’s CNG scheme said.
The nationwide project calls for converting 1.46 million gasoline-powered public transport vehicles to CNG hybrids. The plan does not include old and dilapidated vehicles.
“In the past two months, information of 76,000 vehicles have been registered at gcr.niopdc.ir, of which 16,234 have been verified and the rest are private cars,” ILNA quoted Mohamad Hossein Baqeri as saying.
So far 3,773 vehicles have been converted to CNG hybrids and the remaining will be done gradually.
The scheme offers free of charge conversion services to drivers of taxis, pickups and commercial vehicles.
The Ministry of Industries, Mines and Trade has announced 400 certified retrofiring centers in 25 provinces to implement the national scheme.
Each center can refit seven vehicles a day. The plan is expected to curb daily gasoline consumption by 12 million liters.
Private car owners can also visit the centers but have to pay for the job.
Following the government's decision to raise gasoline prices last November, CNG consumption increased because its price was not changed.
In the first two months after that, 30,000 car owners applied to convert their vehicles to CNG hybrids.
According to official reports, of the total 19 million vehicles in Iran, more than 5 million have hybrid CNG engines.
Convincing people to switch to natural gas has long been on the government agenda.
With incentives CNG consumption has reached 20 million cubic meters per day, but the government is trying to further increase the use of this clean fuel.
After Covid-19 related traffic restrictions were eased, daily CNG consumption rose and is projected to exceed 24 mcm/d by the end of July, Baqeri said.
State endeavors have been aimed at curbing fossil fuel consumption and reducing toxic emissions from diesel engines that are heavy polluters.
CNG is projected to comprise 35% of Iran's total fuel consumption by the end of the Sixth Five-Year Economic Development Plan (2017-22).
Iran has over 2,000 CNG stations and ranks fifth in global CNG consumption.
Abundant gas deposits plus cost-effective production justify replacing gasoline and diesel with compressed natural gas.
One cubic meter of CNG costs 3.5 cents, while a liter of gasoline is sold at 9 cents. Filling a car with 20 cubic meters of gas costs two times less compared to gasoline.