CNG finding foothold in municipalities

GVW GROUP AUTOCAR CNG TRUCKSAs the first refuse truck maker to adopt the Cummins Westport CNG engine, Autocar is bringing energy independence, economic vitality and environmental consciousness to local waste hauling across North America. Its CNG trucks slash budgets and emissions alike, with annual fuel savings of at least$10,000 for each truck.

This summer, the City of Sacramento, Calif. purchased 11 new Autocar CNG refuse trucks, and has plans to open a new CNG fueling station this October. Sacramento Fleet Manager Keith Leech noted that for about half the price of diesel, the annual fuel savings of CNG outweighed the slightly higher up-front cost of the truck.

Other recent municipal Autocar purchases include the City of Houston, Texas; the City of Orlando, Florida; and Salt Lake City, Utah.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced last month the $19 million New York Truck Incentive Program, which helps local waste haulers buy CNG trucks. Other communities are also offering similar incentives. For example, this past July, the City of Temple, Texas purchased 14 new CNG garbage trucks using state grants and funds.

The CNG trend is spreading even beyond governments and municipalities, as Americans seek to lower their dependence on foreign oil. Organizations like T. Boone Pickens’ Clean Energy Fuels Corp. are expanding CNG infrastructure in American towns and cities.  National haulers such as Republic Services and Waste Management are increasing the share of CNG trucks in their sizeable fleets every year.