61 active CNG fueling stations; plans for 29 more
Florida’s recently created natural gas vehicle incentive program produced 1,820 jobs and $68 million in wages in the state, reports The Florida Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition (FNGVC). FNGVC Chairman, Eric Criss, welcomed the report: “This is a great example of the public and private sectors working together for the greater good. We’re creating jobs and reducing air emissions.”
Senator Wilton Simpson commented on the report: “This economic report shows how successful Florida’s Natural Fuel Gas Vehicle Rebate program has been. This fuel provides significant budget savings to governmental entities, the business world, and our citizens. Natural gas has been a game changer for Florida and the United States, not only for motor vehicles but for the energy sector, commercial businesses, and the manufacturing industry. I’m proud to have sponsored this legislation in the Florida Senate.”
Prior to the legislation, there were 18 Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) stations in Florida. There are now 61 active CNG fueling stations with an additional 29 planned. This is a 238% increase in CNG fueling stations over two years. The report notes that a CNG station costs on average $1.5 million; meaning investment in CNG station infrastructure has been $91.5 million over the past two years. Since January 1, 2014, the State of Florida has spent $4.7 million in rebates issued under the Natural Gas Fuel Fleet Vehicle Rebate program. Using the RIMS II multipliers established by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, the state’s $4.7 million investment has generated a total economic output of $204.5 million, 1,820 jobs, and $68.0 million in earnings—an “outstanding return on investment” says the Coalition.
State Representative Lake Ray, who has taken up the issue of Florida’s energy and ports in the State House urged the adoption of natural gas vehicle incentives: “It is exciting to see the Florida Natural Fuel Gas Vehicle Rebate program working so well. The fleets in my legislative district, Jacksonville, and its surrounding area have begun the transition to the clean burning American natural gas. We have Champion Brands a beer distributor, UPS, Raven Trucking, taxis, a seafood wholesaler, local government, and the Jacksonville Transit Authority making the move.”
The FNGVC includes food and beverage distributors, natural gas fueling station builders, public utilities and others.
Economist Hank Fishkind of Fishkind & Associates supplied the figures for this follow-up analysis of a 2012 report his firm conducted for the coalition. The Fishkind and Associates study can be found in the Public Policy section of the coalition website: www.fuelforjobs.com.
(Source: Florida Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition)