“Currently, 23 state legislatures are considering bills that support natural gas as a transportation fuel…”
The state of Wyoming has responded to the ever increasing gasoline and diesel prices by passing a law ( HB235) directing two state agencies to begin switching their fleets to natural gas, reports the US natural gas vehicle association NGVAmerica. The law appropriates $200,000 for the Wyoming Department of Transportation and the Department of Administration and Information to retrofit or acquire vehicles in their fleets that are capable of running on natural gas. The state expects to switch 20 vehicles to natural gas.
“Over the past few years, we’ve seen a steady growth in interest in natural gas vehicles from government and private fleets,” said Richard Kolodziej, president of NGVAmerica. “But with the recent spike in gasoline and diesel prices, we’re seeing an even bigger spike in fleet calls. Saving over $1 per gallon in fuel cost has gotten everyone’s attention. The fact that natural gas is primarily a domestic fuel and that NGVs produce less urban pollution and greenhouse gases is just an added bonus.
“Currently, 23 state legislatures are considering bills that support natural gas as a transportation fuel, but Wyoming is the first state to recently appropriate money for state fleets to switch to natural gas.”
Most natural gas vehicles (NGVs) in the US are fleet vehicles, including natural gas powered buses and several large commercial fleets, such as UPS, AT&T and Verizon. Transit fleets are the biggest consumers of natural gas as a transportation fuel, which costs on average one-third less than gasoline or diesel fuel. The fastest growing segment of natural gas vehicles is in the refuse market.
Because of the increasing interest in domestically produced natural gas as a transportation fuel, there are regional alliances across the country working to develop natural gas fueling stations along the transportation corridors that serve regional fleets. These regional alliances are in Texas, California, the Northeast, the Southeast, along the I-75 corridor and in the Rockies.
“We will be ready as more fleets make the economic decision to switch to natural gas,” says Kolodziej.