Local business look to CNG to save money

Compressed Natural Gas gaining popularity

TULSA - With the average price of gas close to $4, people are looking for alternatives. Cities and businesses across Green Country are expressing interest in compressed natural gas.

CNG is not a new concept, but it is growing in popularity.

"Everything I've got is sold, I'm sold out probably until August right now." said Tom Sewell, of Tulsa Gas Technologies; a CNG manufacturer.

Tuesday, representatives from different cities and organizations toured the CNG facility learn how it works and what it could do for them.

"We're in Stigler, Oklahoma and run a fleet of approximately 200 vehicles." said Ron Davis, of Kibois Area Transit System.

Davis said he is interested in converting his fleet of transit buses to CNG.

"We are all for wanting to do it, just finding a place to fill up since we're the rural part of the state is the difficult part." said Davis.

There are currently 41 public CNG stations across the state. By the end of the year there should be 50 stations.

The Cherokee Nation will open a CNG station late this summer in Tahlequah, and Owasso has plans to open a pump and convert a portion of its city fleet later this year.

"We're trying to put stations in Vinita and at the Mid America plant in Pryor. We are also going to upgrade a system in Claremore and Miami and add one in Grove." said Ed Crone, Executive Director of the Grand Gateway Economic Development Association.

Last year, Tulsa Public Schools converted 140 school buses to run on CNG at a savings of at least $100 a day. The District plans to convert another 22 buses within the next 6 months.

The City of Tulsa has also converted 5 trash trucks to run on CNG.

"Those trash truck use 70 gallons a day. They're saving around $2 a gallon because of the way they buy and compress their gas." said Tom Sewell.

You won't find CNG at any Quik Trip; the company told 2NEWS, the consumer demand is just not there yet to offset the expenses to add it. But when it is, they say they'll look into it.

We have a map of CNG stations across the state on KJRH.com.


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