I'm Andy Johnson of Southern States Cooperative in Richmond, VA.
I encourage the inclusion of propane into the 2018 Virginia Energy Plan as a renewable resource for our energy consumption. Propane provides the opportunity for the Commonwealth to adopt an environmentally friendly renewable fuel source that is domestically produced.
In Virginia, over 200 million gallons of propane are used annually for things such as agriculture, industrial, vehicular, residential, commercial, and retail uses. The Virginia propane industry serves over 450,000 citizens across the Commonwealth and allows them to participate in our economy with a cheap, efficient, and domestic product.
For example, if Virginia were to replace all 7,739 school buses with new, clean-burning propane models, there would be a 92 percent reduction in NOx. As an additional benefit, there would be a 98 percent reduction in particulate matter (PM) and a 91 percent reduction in tailpipe Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC).
In 2014, there was enough propane produced from the domestic natural gas supply to meet about 98 percent of the U.S.’s consumer a demand. By using more of our domestically produced propane, we can continue to decrease our dependency on foreign-sourced fuel.
The 2018 Virginia Energy Plan should include propane because of its strengths and opportunities as a domestic, renewable resource and the Commonwealth should consider this when developing a plan that benefits all Virginians.