Interstate Clean Transportation Corridor

ABOUT NATURAL GAS VEHICLES

Alternative fuels such as liquefied natural gas (LNG) and compressed natural gas (CNG) offer fleets the opportunity to meet tough emission standards, improve their environmental footprint, reduce imported petroleum, and lower overall operating costs, therefore providing a multitude of benefits for both companies and the general public. Natural gas is the alternative fuel of choice for heavy-duty vehicle operators. Natural gas vehicles (NGVs) provide similar power, torque and fuel range as conventionally-fueled vehicles, while providing significantly improved emissions benefits and opportunities for long term operational cost reductions.  Additionally, NGV options are ready in a variety of factory-direct applications that can meet most fleets’ light-duty, medium-duty and heavy-duty operations needs.

The ICTC’s long experience with NGVs has shown us that liquefied natural gas (LNG) vehicles provide the best commercially available technology for fleets with higher fuel use and range demands.  For fleets whose operations remain more local, such as municipal operations, refuse collection, and some delivery applications, compressed natural gas (CNG) also works well for heavy-duty operations.  Whether LNG or CNG, natural gas fleet programs are good for the environment and good for business, making them an ideal alternative fuel option for savvy fleets. With the rising cost of petroleum-based gasoline, tougher emission standards and the growing public demand for better environmental policies, NGVs provide an attractive alternative with a multitude of key advantages.

NGVs are good for the environment

LNG and CNG reduce emissions of smog-causing NOx, cancer causing particulate matter, and global warming greenhouse gases. A typical natural gas truck will have 90% fewer NOx and PM emissions than a diesel truck, and up to 30% fewer greenhouse gas emissions. These benefits mean that alternative fuel vehicles help fleets meet tougher emission standards and environmental compliance goals, as well as providing the public with tangible proof of corporate environmental promises.

Natural gas is the cleanest of all commercially available transportation fuels for class 6-8 vehicles, even when factoring in emissions from production and transportation.  Composed mainly of methane, the primary products of the combustion of natural gas are carbon dioxide (CO2) and water vapor.  Given the simplicity of the methane molecule, natural gas engines produce a fraction of the soot created by diesel engines.  Unlike vapors from gasoline, methane does not react in sunlight to create tropospheric ozone (smog).  LNG and CNG are the only alternative fuels currently available that meet California’s tough near-term Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) goals, the toughest carbon reduction regulations in the nation and a standard that is generally viewed as the model for a similar national standard.

NGVs are good for the bottom line

Alternative fuel vehicles are less expensive to operate and maintain than traditional gasoline-powered vehicles. Although diesel and gasoline fuel costs have fluctuated wildly in recent years, natural gas vehicle fuel has consistently remained less expensive than traditional petroleum fuel options. Standard fuel cost savings are approximately 15% over standard fuels. In addition, because natural gas burns cleaner than most other fuels, vehicle parts stay cleaner and maintenance costs are often less.

NGVs are good for national security

NGV programs allow fleets to rely on stable, plentiful, domestically-sourced fuel instead of imported oil. Currently, about 95% of transportation fuel in the U.S. is derived from petroleum, yet over three-quarters of the world's reserves of conventional oil are in OPEC nations. In contrast, 98 percent of the natural gas used in the U.S. was produced in North America. Due to recent advances in technology, the amount of natural gas that we can produce and recover is actually increasing, including natural gas from renewable sources.

NGVs will work in your operations

Natural gas technologies work in almost any application, successfully powering vehicles ranging from taxis, transit buses, refuse haulers, street sweepers, airport shuttles, delivery trucks, and class 8 drayage trucks. Worldwide, there were 11.2 million natural gas vehicles on the road by the end of 2009, about 110,000 of which are operating in the United States. Factory-direct natural gas vehicle options from major international manufacturers provide fleet users with reliable and versatile clean technology options. If your fleet is considering alternative fuel operations, there is a technology to meet your needs.

Fueling with natural gas is nearly the same as filling up with petroleum-based gasoline or diesel. The pumps are similar to gasoline or diesel pumps, you fill up your tank using a nozzle, and today’s state-of-the-art stations are built to fuel vehicles at comparable speeds to traditional fuels.