Bakken tells us natural gas truck sales in the US are below expectations. About 10,000 natural gas-powered trucks are expected to be sold this year, a slight increase from last year’s 8,500 but far short of the 16,000 retailers hoped for. The reasons given for the slow US sales include the high costs of the trucks, their inefficient mileage compared to diesel, and the paucity of refueling stations nationwide.

While it is possible to travel from coast-to-coast on compressed gas alone there are few viable routes for doing so, a huge restriction for an industry that transports goods to every corner of the nation.

See also, OILPRICE, Natural Gas As A Trucking Fuel Fails To Deliver, FuelFix, Economics of natural gas don’t always add up for fleets, FleetOwner, Fueling infrastructure remains obstacle to natural gas expansion, and Commercial Carrier Journal, Panel of truck makers says resale value, fueling stations key obstacles

To encourage the use of natural gas as a transportation fuel in North America, the Canadian and US governments are looking at ways to minimize the barriers to its use for truckers, rail and marine vessels. Among other things, Natural Resources Canada and the U.S. Department of Energy will work together to facilitate the development of common codes and standards in the industry.

ACT Research says the natural gas-powered truck market in the US is moving from infancy to adolescence according to Fleet Equipment. US natural gas truck sales for 2014 are  expected to total 11,000 units, up 27% from 2013.

NGV Global News tells us natural gas is the the most popular alternative fuel in Germany. Sales of natural gas vehicles in 2013 rose to 8,900 units, a 38% increase over the previous year.

The South American country of Columbia is approaching half a million NGVs we are informed by NGV Global News. As of July this year, a record 482,312 conversions were accumulated in the country, of which 162,219 were in the capital city of Bogotá. See also NGV Global News, Colombian Natural Gas Vehicle Conversions Grow 17%.

In the US, beer giant Anheuser-Busch is converting its entire delivery truck fleet in Houston, Texas to natural gas reports Manufacturing Net. The company is replacing its current fleet of 66 diesel trucks with motors using compressed natural gas (CNG).

The UK city of Reading is converting 113 cabs to CNG says NGV Global News. The city has also opened a new CNG refueling station which will supply local buses as well as the taxis.

The US state of Texas has 7100 natural gas vehicles and over 170 existing and planned natural gas refueling stations according to my San Antonio. Currently there are 60 public fueling stations and 44 private stations. Next year, 67 more natural gas stations are expected to open. Said Texas Railroad Commissioner David Porter: “Fleets are buying more natural gas vehicles because we have more stations. And the more vehicles they buy, the more natural gas stations get built.”

Volvo is producing a new CNG truck reports autoevolution. The Volvo FE CNG runs on compressed natural gas and has been developed for operations involving short driving cycles with repeated stop and starts such as local distribution and garbage collection and disposal.

 

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