Canadian Urban Transit Research & Innovation Consortium
Canadian Urban Transit Research & Innovation Consortium
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CUTRIC Report Reveals Renewable Natural Gas as a Solution to Decarbonizing Transit Fleets in Canada

June 30, 2022, TORONTO, ON – The Canadian Urban Transit Research & Innovation Consortium (CUTRIC) is excited to announce the publication of a research report that studies an alternative solution to carbon intensive, diesel-powered vehicles.This report explores a cleaner and cheaper transit solution using renewable natural gas (RNG) as a fuel to operate compressed natural gas (CNG) buses.


The Renewable Natural Gas as a Complementary Solution to Decarbonization report reveals the feasibility of renewable natural gas in five North American transit agency fleets, including Calgary Transit, Hamilton Street Railway, Riverside Transit Agency, TransLink and one more Californian agency. With production offsetting both tailpipe and human activity-related emissions, RNG fuel has the potential of being zero-carbon and carbon-negative. “Decarbonizing mobility will require that humanity uses many different tools and solutions to forge the path forward to a zero-emission future. Different technologies offer different types of benefits. Renewable natural gas can be one of those solutions. Alongside battery-electric buses and hydrogen fuel cell electric buses, RNG-fuelled buses have been shown to help reduce emissions overall from transit buses,” said Josipa Petrunic, President & CEO of CUTRIC. 


As transit is one of the most common modes of transportation in larger cities, utilizing RNG in transit fleets can contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and address climate change, while also maintaining operational costs compared to diesel, battery-electric buses, and hydrogen fuel cell electric buses.

Compressed natural gas buses are already an established technology across Europe and North America. Converting the fuel they combust from fossil fuel sources to renewable sources is an incremental innovation with substantial environmental benefits. This report provides thorough research and steps needed to leverage this technology in Canada.  

“RNG may turn out to be an untapped source of immediate greenhouse gas emissions savings for transit agencies that are already reliant on CNG buses,” Petrunic said. “It’s time to take a more serious look at the technology as part of a spectrum of solutions.”


Grace Reilly