US Alt-Fuel Price Report Amplifies Natural Gas Advantage

| USA | Source: Clean Cities, US Department of Energy
Clean Cities: Alt-Fuel/Diesel Period Comparisons

Clean Cities chart: Alt-Fuel/Diesel Period Comparisons (natural gas in red)

The US Department of Energy has issued it’s Clean Cities Alternative Fuel Price Report for April, once again demonstrating the economic advantages of utilizing compressed natural gas (CNG) as a fuel for transportation. Not surprisingly, the report notes that consumer interest in alternative fuels increases as the price differential per gallon increases for gasoline and diesel. Compared with the price report for the January period, CNG has increased 7%,  diesel rose 17% and gasoline rose 20%.

Based on standard deviation calculations, the report says CNG appears to have had more variability in price during this time period relative to diesel fuel. The Nat Gas Act, when approved, may remove some of that fluctuation by providing clarity in federal policy direction and signalling go-ahead for investors and fleet operators. The bill provides incentives for the use of natural gas as a vehicle fuel, the purchase of natural gas fueled vehicles (NGVs) and the installation of natural gas vehicle refueling property. It currently has 178 co-sponsors in the House of Representatives and the support of President Obama, but speed of passage remains slow despite the significant price advantage provided by natural gas fuel.

The report states:

  • CNG has a lower price than gasoline for all regions of the country for which prices were obtained, with the largest difference ($2.16 per GGE) being in the Rocky Mountain region. On average, CNG costs about $1.63 less than gasoline on a per gasoline gallon equivalent basis.
  • CNG has a lower price than diesel for all regions of the country, with the largest difference ($2.50 per DGE) being in the Rocky Mountain region. On average, CNG costs about $1.74 less than diesel on a per diesel gallon equivalent basis.

The Alternative Fuel Price Report for April is available here.

Editor Note: The Rocky Mountain region is made up of the States of Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, Utah and Colorado.

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