New Jersey Natural Gas (NJNG) today received approval from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) to implement a pilot program to help stimulate the market for natural gas vehicles (NGV) in the state and the benefits they provide. Under this program, NJNG will invest up to $10 million, over the next 12 months, to build between five and seven compressed natural gas (CNG) refueling stations at host facilities throughout its service territory. The use of NGVs, particularly for commercial fleets, will help lower emissions and provide a viable and economically valuable alternative to traditional petroleum-based vehicles.
“The need for greater fuel diversity has never been more important,” said Laurence M. Downes, chairman and CEO of New Jersey Natural Gas. “I would like to commend the Board of Public Utilities for their approval of this pilot program and their leadership in advancing the goals of the state’s Energy Master Plan. With the availability and price benefit of today’s natural gas, we have an opportunity to help grow our economy and protect our environment by encouraging the market for alternative fuel vehicles, and that’s good for New Jersey and our future.”
Increasing the use of NGVs to meet the state’s transportation needs provides a cost effective and environmentally cleaner choice of fuel. Compressed natural gas can reduce fuel costs between 30 and 50 percent over petroleum, a tremendous savings for businesses and individuals. Additionally, according to the American Gas Association natural gas powered vehicles produce up to 30 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions than diesel, which is good for the environment.
One of the major obstacles to the increased use of NGVs has been a lack of refueling infrastructure. Currently, there are only three refueling stations in New Jersey that are open to the public. With this pilot program, NJNG is helping to grow the market for NGVs in the state.