Update: Renewable Propane in New England


Renewable propane arrived this year in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Vermont.

Massachusetts received its first delivery of renewable propane at the NGL Supply Wholesale terminal in West Springfield, for distribution to retailers in the region, reports the Renewable Propane Alliance, an industry group. Bourne’s Energy in Morrisville, Vermont, received nearly 10,000 gallons in September.

Leslie Anderson, president and CEO of the Propane Gas Association of New England, which is an Alliance member, said in a statement:

“The cost is just slightly more than traditional propane today, but we anticipate, as more of it is produced, that that cost is going to come down. And if you think about the added benefit that you get by knowing you’re helping the climate and helping the planet by using renewables — I think a lot of people are willing to spend a little bit more to get that.”

The Renewable Propane Alliance promotes rPG as “a safe, reliable and economical part of the solution for an energy-efficient future.” According to the Alliance’s website, “Propane and renewable propane are molecularly identical. This means that they can be blended without the expense and labor of conversion. The difference is that they’re coming from different sources. The renewable sources that have been instrumental in perfecting the production of renewable propane to date include animal oils, vegetable oils, biomass and other triglycerides.” The feedstock for renewable propane can include plant matter like corn, the Alliance added.


Founders of the Alliance include Warm Thoughts Communications, the Western Propane Gas Association, the Propane Gas Association of New England, the North Carolina Propane Gas Association, the Texas Propane Gas AssociationOberon Fuels and the World Energy Group.

One day after NGL received its shipment in Massachusetts, propane retailer Hocon Gas on September 15 brought in Connecticut’s first renewable propane shipment, the Alliance also reports. The rPG delivery was for Hocon’s propane autogas filling station.

Autogas made from conventional propane is more eco-friendly (and affordable) than gasoline or diesel, according to the Alliance website. It emits less carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide and nitrogen/sulfur oxides, the Alliance said. Renewable propane has still better greenhouse gas performance, with a typical carbon intensity that’s roughly 23% that of gasoline or diesel, according to the Propane Education & Resource Council.

Connecticut has over 600 propane autogas-fueled school buses, the Alliance said.


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