Natural Gas

The Basics

Natural gas is made up primarily of methane with trace amounts of other gases. It occurs naturally underground and is extracted through gas wells or in conjunction with crude oil production. For storage purposes it can be stored as compressed natural gas (CNG) or liquid natural gas (LNG).

Natural gas vehicles (NGV) are the most advanced alternative fuel technology available commercially. Both light and heavy-duty vehicles can use CNG. According to the Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition, more than 20% of new transit bus orders are for natural gas buses. Some vehicles come already equipped to run either entirely on CNG (dedicated) or on both CNG and gasoline or diesel (bi-fuel). Additionally, many vehicles can be converted to run on CNG. All U.S.-based, full-sized transit bus manufacturers offer CNG buses. Applications include transit and school buses, refuse trucks, light-duty vehicles, vans, passenger cars and taxis. LNG is not suitable for light-duty vehicles but is an ideal fuel for large (class 8) trucks, transit buses, and medium-duty fleet trucks. There are over 150,000 NGVs on the road in the U.S. fueling at 1,500 locations. Over half of these sites are commercially accessible.

The Southeast Alternative Fuel Corridor

Interactive maps detailing locations of LNG (liquified natural gas) and CNG (compressed natural gas) stations (black points) in the southeast with a 100 mile buffer (seen in green) and 75 mile buffer (seen in orange). Toggle on/off different layers in the legend for more specificity, search locations in the top right bar, and click the double arrow in the lefthand corner for more details.

LNG Stations

CNG Stations

Advantages

Ecologically Friendly

Light duty vehicles running can reduce life cycle greenhouse gas emissions by 15% (or 84% if running on RNG). CNG fuel systems also are completely sealed causing these vehicles to produce no evaporative emissions

Energy Independence

Nearly 90% of natural gas is domestically produced increasing the country’s energy security.

Economic Benefits

Natural gas typically is cheaper than that of the conventional fuels of diesel and gasoline. Average natural gas costs are one-third less than gasoline at the pump.

Considerations

The driving range of NGVs are generally less than that of gasoline and diesel vehicles, however extra storage tanks or the use of LNG can help increase range for larger vehicles.

Local Partners

NGV America

NGVAmerica represents more than 200 companies, environmental groups, and government organizations interested in the promotion and use of natural gas and biomethane as transportation fuels. Their member companies are those that produce, distribute, and market natural gas and biomethane across the country; manufacture and service natural gas vehicles, engines, and equipment; and operate fleets powered by clean-burning gaseous fuels.