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Clean Energy Outlines Plan for Natural Gas Fueling Stations

1/13/2012 1:30:00 PM
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‘America’s Natural Gas Highway’ to Include Major Truck Routes

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Clean Energy Fuels Corp. has unveiled a plan for the first phase of 150 new natural gas fueling stations, and said it anticipates opening 70 stations in 33 states by the end of the year.

The company in December said it was pumping $150 million in funding for what it terms “America’s Natural Gas Highway.� Clean Energy first unveiled plans for the natural gas fueling stations in August.

Many stations will be co-located at Pilot-Flying J Travel Centers through an agreement with Pilot to build, own and operate natural gas fueling sites. Pilot-Flying J is the nation’s largest truck-stop operator with more than 550 retail properties in 47 states.

Major highway segments include those linking Southern California and Las Vegas, the Texas Triangle of Houston, San Antonio and Dallas/Ft. Worth, Los Angeles to Dallas, Houston and Atlanta to Chicago and networks along major Midwest trucking corridors.

Scheduled for completion this year and in 2013, the 150 first-phase stations coincide with the expected arrival of new natural gas truck engines suited for heavy-duty, over-the-road trucking.

Truck original equipment manufacturers such as Cummins-Westport, Kenworth Motor Co., Peterbilt Motors Co., Navistar Inc., Freightliner and Caterpillar Inc. are expected to have Class 8 trucks available in engine sizes allowing for varied road and driving requirements, Clean Energy said.

“We are moving quickly to build this important network in order to support the new trucks,� said Clean Energy CEO Andrew Littlefair said in a statement.

“Clean Energy has already engaged over 100 shippers, private fleets and for-hire carriers that have shared their operations to qualify the economic opportunity of operating natural gas trucks, which has helped us, in turn, plan the first phase of the natural gas fueling highway,� he said.

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Emil Estafanous, CPA, CFF, CGMA