Vehicle maker, HVO producer agree to explore sustainable-mobility initiatives
Commercial-vehicle maker Iveco Group N.V. and Italian multinational oil and gas company Eni S.p.A. announced April 28 that they have signed a letter of intent (LOI) to explore potential cooperation on sustainable-mobility initiatives in the commercial-vehicle sector in Europe, and to accelerate the decarbonization of transport.
The two companies aim to define an integrated sustainable-mobility platform for commercial fleets by offering innovative vehicles powered by biofuels and sustainable energy vectors—such as hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO), also known as “renewable diesel,” biomethane, hydrogen and electricity—and the related infrastructure.
Areas of collaboration envisioned by the agreement include Eni’s offer of 100 percent pure HVO for Iveco heavy trucks equipped with engines able to operate on it. HVO can be used in its pure form in all of the most-recent diesel engines. It is a high-quality biofuel derived from materials of vegetable origin and waste, produced using the proprietary Ecofining™ technology at Eni’s Venice and Gela biorefineries. 100 percent pure HVO enables CO2-emission reductions of 60 to 90 percent (calculated throughout the lifecycle) compared to the standard fossil-fuel mix.
Moreover, Eni and Iveco—Europe’s leading manufacturer of natural gas-powered commercial vehicles—also intend to speed up the market availability of biomethane, a renewable fuel made from agro-industrial waste, which can be both compressed (CNG) and liquified (LNG). This will be made possible through partnerships in Italy and abroad.
The nonexclusive collaboration also embraces initiatives in favor of battery-electric and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles, as well as the related infrastructure. Iveco has a launch plan for new battery-electric and then hydrogen fuel-cell models, while Eni intends to set up a network of charging points. The Eni Live Station in San Giuliano, near Mestre (Venice), is the first hydrogen filling station in an urban area in Italy. This will be followed by a second station in San Donato Milanese.
“We are continuing on our path towards decarbonizing freight mobility, using all the currently available options and pursuing every potential area of development,” said Luca Sra, president of Iveco Group’s truck business unit. “This collaboration with Eni is a further step forward to achieving Iveco Group's goal of net-zero CO2 emissions by 2040. It will enable us to leverage the vast experience of both companies, built up through years of research and application in the field, and to design new customer solutions that are environmentally effective and efficient in terms of reducing total cost of ownership.”
Giuseppe Ricci, Eni’s energy-evolution director, added, “The collaboration with Iveco forms part of Eni’s strategy for achieving its aim of net-zero emissions by 2050. To achieve this transition, it is essential to use all available technologies with a complementary approach that can contribute to supplying emissions-reducing products. Together with Iveco, we will be able to push forward with more sustainable haulage since the partnership comprises both technologically ready, immediately available solutions such as HVO biofuel, of which Eni is Europe’s second-largest producer, and biomethane, as well as the joint development of solutions that will be ready in the medium and long term. Those include the hydrogen network and the electrification of commercial vehicles, bearing in mind that the energy transition is highly complex and requires the synergic, forward-looking contribution of all industry players.”