Making GREAT progress
07-12-2016Infrastructure
GREAT, the STRING initiated EU project, is making GREAT progress. The project connects Hamburg, Copenhagen, Malmö, Oslo and Stockholm by building a green corridor with alternative fuel infrastructure. The aim is to lower thresholds and help speed up the shift to alternative fuel vehicles and a fossil free transport sector.

GREAT started in January 2016 and now infrastructure installations are well under way. Soon to come are PR campaigns to urge for a change in consumer behaviour towards alternative fuels and new reports on Policy Measures and Business models

GREAT Project Manager Britt Karlsson-Green gives her take on 2016.

-It's essential to speed up the shift towards decarbonisation of the transport sector to reduce our use of fossil fuels, and we need to act now. GREAT is a really positive example of the public and private sector coming together to contribute. 2016 has been a year of staring up processes to ensure success in the coming years, but we have also met several project milestones and now we are up to speed.

 

The first infrastructure in place

GREAT is installing 70 fast chargers for electric cars and three refuelling stations with liquefied gas (C‑LNG) for trucks. E.ON is responsible for installing fast chargers and GREAT is setting up 50 in Sweden, 15 in Denmark and 5 in Northern Germany. As of the end of November, chargers have been installed in Malmö, Värnamo and Kållered in Sweden as well as two in Copenhagen and one in Slagelse in Denmark.

- The increase in alternative fuels infrastructure, for electric cars as well as BioMethane gas, is critical to meet our national and international climate targets. At E.ON we have both a responsibility and an opportunity to be one of the leaders in the shift through our strong focus on sustainable transport. says Mattias Vendel, Programme Manager for eMobility and GREAT at E.ON Sverige AB.

This past year, E.ON has focused on negotiating site partner agreements to secure attractive locations.  Installations are expected to speed up during the first half of 2017, meeting the milestone of the 35th charger installed by the end of June.

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We need trucks

For the C‑LNG stations, the focus during the past year has been to secure locations and acquire planning permits. The first station, in Högbytorp outside Stockholm, is expected to be completed by the end of 2017. The two following stations in Malmö and Munkedal are expected to open in late 2018. Central to the development is that Swedish truck manufacturers Volvo and Scania comes out with heavy 450+ hp trucks. During the GREAT seminar in Brussels in November, Rolf Willkrans from Volvo Group Headquarters reported that Volvo would have heavy LNG trucks on the market 2018.

In Sweden, the focus has long been to have a large portion (50-70%) of BioMethane in vehicle CNG. GREAT supports using BioMethane for the LNG stations within the project, providing a flagship example of sustainable BioLNG.

- We offer a sustainable fuel option in heavy transports with our BioLNG product BiGreen and are investing in the infrastructure. To coordinate and cooperate with the truck manufacturers is central to the business case." says FordonsGas CEO Bo Ramberg.

 

Influencing behaviour

In 2016, GREAT has started communication and dissemination focusing on events, online, PR and public affairs. GREAT has arranged events to promote alternative fuels at for example Folkemødet, TEN-T Days, Almedalen, and Fehmarnbelt Days. A much appreciated seminar was arranged in Brussels in November and was attended by key DG Move representatives. To mark the opening of the first fast charger a Grand Opening was held on 31 May accompanied with press releases from all partners.

- It's not just a matter of putting infrastructure in place, GREAT is also working hard to promote alternative fuels. Getting the general public to change behaviour is central and we are working with a wide range of activities. In a sense we are alternative fuel car salesmen, says Britt Karlsson-Green

In the coming years, the communications focus will expand to include more events directed to the general public as the infrastructure in the GREAT project grows. A communications concept themed "Drive clean!" has been developed to promote alternative fuels in a B2C format.

 

Studies showing first results

The GREAT project also provides a possibility to have market insight into the business of alternative fuels. GREAT is producing studies on "Policy measures" and "Business models" as well as measuring attitudes and behaviour on alternative fuels in the corridor. The first interim study reports have recently been delivered to the EU. 

- What we are presenting now at the end of 2016 is a state of the art report showing the status of policy measures and business models for each country. Starting from this, we can continue to evaluate the development and present suggestions and best practises,  says Mette Hoé at Region Hovedstaden, responsible for the Policy Measures Activity.

The Danish Technical University is responsible for conducting of the GREAT survey. The survey has recently been distributed in Denmark and Sweden to both EV and non EV owners. The aim is to learning more about the behaviour and attitudes connected to EV ownership and purchase of EVs. It also aims at showing any effects of the increase in charging infrastructure in the GREAT geography.

 

Follow the progress of GREAT at www.great-region.org

@great_region on Twitter

and through the GREAT News newsletter

 

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Jarko Ahlbom, Zero Emission Strategy Manager at Nissan Nordic, Britt Karlsson-Green, Project Manager at GREAT, Jonas Abrahamsson, CEO at E.ON Sweden and Thomas Hansson, then STRING chairman at the Grand Opening of the first fast charger in the GREAT project in Malmö in June.