Thinking of switching your fleet to natural gas? You’re not alone! Natural gas has become an increasingly-popular fleet fuel. Many large, well-known fleets use it in part or all of their fleet vehicles. There are many great reasons to switch to Compressed or Renewable Natural Gas, including:
- Save money on diesel fuel
- Meet clean air requirements
- Brand yourself as environmentally friendly
As a fleet manager, your priority is to make choices that benefit your fleet, drivers, and company. When you switch to CNG you want to make sure you do it in a way that makes the most fiscal sense. Deciding how your fleet will refuel is a crucial part of your decision.
Depending on your fleet’s needs, you could either rely on existing natural gas infrastructure (like our stations in Sacramento and San Jose!) or build a CNG fueling station of your own.
Read on for our advice on deciding which is best for your fleet.
Should You Build a CNG Fueling Station, Or Rely On Existing Stations?
Building Your Own CNG Fueling Station(s)
One of the major concerns with building your own CNG fueling station, especially for smaller fleets, is the cost. Costs vary greatly depending on the type of CNG fueling station you need, but you could be looking at hundreds of thousands of dollars.
For larger fleets who can afford it, the convenience and reliability of having your own station(s) can make building your own worth it. For example, companies like Waste Management with trucks and hubs across the country need to have a large supply of fuel readily available to their fleet, so constructing their own natural gas infrastructure made sense.
Working With Existing Natural Gas Retailers
If your driver’s routes regularly take them to rural areas where CNG isn’t already available, relying on existing infrastructure may not work for you. (However, this problem won’t impact as many companies as you think. Read on!)
Natural gas is an expanding industry, and stations are available in most states. (Find a station near you with this map from the US Department of Energy!) Plus, thanks to companies like ReFuel Energy, and Clean Energy, infrastructure is growing all the time!
Relying on existing infrastructure can be more cost-effective, especially for smaller fleets when building your own CNG fueling station isn’t as practical. It can also be a great option for larger fleets to supplement their fuel supply.
The bottom line? While bigger fleets may need their own CNG fueling stations, existing fuel retailers can help supplement their supply, and make natural gas more practical for smaller fleets who may not be able to afford to build their own station. Either way, your fleet is about to become part of a growing natural gas industry – welcome!