Energy leaders ponder natural gas station in FFPublished 11:27am Monday, February 25, 2013
A session discussing how a fueling station for compressed natural gas could be built in Fergus Falls drew a full room at West Central Initiative Friday.
One company at the session is already a leader in building CNG fueling stations. Joanne Hayes, business developer for Clean Energy, told the group how Clean Energy is promoting the most rapid transition for the U.S. to the clean, petroleum-free transportation fuels. In December, the company announced it had completed the first stage of its nationwide network of natural gas fueling stations for long-haul, heavy-duty freight trucking. To date, Clean Energy has built nearly 200 fueling stations, and has a service force of 80 technicians nationwide.
Other topics included fuel cells for natural gas vehicles, converting petroleum gas vehicles to run on natural gas, and consumer CNG vehicles available now in Fergus Falls. While the big three auto makers are all manufacturing certain light and medium duty vechels already for this growing market, vehicles can also be converted to CNG. Powerfuels CNG LLC brought a converted Ford 250 to the conference. The company is on the Ford approved list as qualified vechicle modifier for CNG conversions.
So what is all the excitement about regarding CNG?
Well, first it’s about money. CNG fuel costs half as much as petroleum gas, and is in abundant supply in the U.S. When a company is running a fleet of trucks cross country, or even a city running a fleet of busses across town, that adds up to huge savings.
But there is another benefit. It’s a cleaner fuel.
“Any fuel that moves us away from petroleum is a good thing,” said Robert Moffitt, Director of Communications for the American Lung Association.
Moffitt, who was one of the speakers at Friday’s session, gives two thumbs up to CNG fuel. CNG vehicles generate fewer exhaust and greenhouse gas emissions than their gasoline- or diesel-powered counterparts.
“Vehicle exhaust is the single largest source of air pollution,” said Moffitt, adding that he hopes to see CNG fueling stations statewide in the near future.
The Fergus Falls Economic Improvement Commission organized the Compressed Natural Gas Fueling Infrastructure Session. For more information call 218-332-5428 or email firstname.lastname@example.org