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Compressed Natural Gas: A Better Fuel Alternative

Compressed natural gas (CNG) is becoming a popular fuel alternative for many local government vehicles. As the price of gasoline continues to increase, local leader are looking towards the future of fuels as a way to save money now. Some tricks can help conserve gasoline in conventional vehicles, but these are not creating the long-term savings many districts need. Fueling fleet vehicles puts a particularly big strain on already tightening local budgets. Just as necessity is the mother of invention, when it comes to fleets, necessity is the mother of going green

Last year Dane County, Wis. used a federal grant to purchase vehicles that run on compressed natural gas in an effort to save money on fuel. Some governments have taken this process a step further by developing their own systems for processing natural gas to essentially make their own fuel. After a political debate, DeKalb County, Ga.voted to produce compressed natural gas from its landfill. The fuel they create will power their own sanitation trucks and be sold to the public. Similarly, the City of Grand Junction and Mesa CountyColo. worked together to develop the Persigo Waste Water Treatment Plant so it could also convert naturally occurring gasses in the system into fuel.

There have also been many questions on the Knowledge Network about CNG benefits, uses, and processes.

This discussion includes information on what Pittsburgh and places in the United Kingdom did to develop and maintain CNG fueling centers for their fleets. You can also read more about CNG fuel options on the U.S. Department of Energy website.

This answer includes an affidavit for use of alternative fleet fuels from Chicago. The Clean Vehicle Education Foundation wrote a press release detailing safe transition practices for using alternative fuels. You can also view a sample contract for CNG services from the state of Texas.

The Knowledge Network also offers a number of documents and articles about CNG and how local governments are using it to save money and help the environment.

Diversifying Your Fuel Supply: The town of Fairfield, Conn. used a grant to incorporate CNG into its system even early on.

Comments

Mark Abeles-Allison

Our CNG station is just going online now. We built a combined slow fill / fast fill station with four fill points for the slow fill and one dispenser for the fast fill. We have 5 vehicles now, two dedicated, three bi-fuel. I took my first long distance trip with the dedicated vehicle last week. It was 300 miles, I fueled in the only mid-state station in Stratford, WI, then again in Madison, WI before heading back north. Each station's fueling procedures are a bit unique so verifying the station is up and running prior to heading out is a good idea.