One million natural gas-fueled trucks would displace 40% of the diesel we use, Littlefair, said, and natural gas costs about $1.50 a gallon less. Nat gas is plentiful right here in the States, too, unlike diesel, which is imported. All it would take is 1,600 nat-gas fueling stations across the country to make it happen, which isn’t much when you consider the 9,000 diesel stations we have now.
Littlefair thinks it’s only a matter of time before a major trucking company like Swift switches completely to nat gas. The company buys 20 trucks a day, said the CEO, so there’s a good chance nat-gas vehicles soon will be cycled in. Swift has already announced it will add 1,400 trucks at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, swapping out the diesel for nat gas. This is a company that buys a million gallons of fuel a day. “So these guys have to look for a cheaper way,” Littlefair said, “and we have it with domestic natural gas.”
There’s a good chance Clean Energy will be working closely with a major energy company like BP, Littlefair said, to bring natural gas to stations across the U.S. in the next two to three years.
“I really think the world is going this way,” he said.
Just a year ago there were 5 million natural gas vehicles in the world and now there are 8.5 million. General Motors makes 19 different types of nat-gas cars in Europe and South America, and eventually that business will make its way here.
Littlefair and his wife already drive nat-gas vehicles. They use a home fueling appliance that they keep right in the garage and fill up whenever they want at just $1.50 a gallon using the same gas you use to heat your pool.
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