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Natural Gas

Basics

  • Natural gas, a fossil fuel, is one of the cleanest burning alternative transportation fuels. It can be used in the form of compressed natural gas (CNG) or liquefied natural gas (LNG) to fuel passenger vehicles, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles.  

Vehicles

  • Dedicated natural gas vehicles are designed to run on natural gas only, while dual-fuel or bi-fuel can run on gasoline or diesel. Dual-fuel vehicles allow users the flexibility to take advantage of natural gas but also have the ability to fuel with gasoline or diesel if natural gas refueling stations are not available. Major automakers offer natural gas vehicles including Honda and Ford.

Benefits

  • Natural gas is exceptionally safe and widely available through established distribution networks.
  • Refueling infrastructure is not widely available, which limits the availability of CNG and LNG to drivers.
  • Natural gas vehicles produce fewer emissions, specifically20-40% less carbon monoxide and 80% less particulate matter and less greenhouse gas emissions.

 Fuels

  • Liquefied Natural Gas is produced by purifying natural gas and super-cooling it to -260 degrees Fahrenheit to convert it to a liquid. LNG is good for trucks needing a longer range because liquid natural gas is denser than CNG and, therefore, more energy can be stored. LNG is typically used in medium and heavy-duty vehicles.
  • Compressed Natural Gas is stored in cylinders at a pressure of 3,000 to 3,600 pounds per square inch (psi). A CNG-powered vehicle gets roughly the same fuel economy as a conventional gasoline vehicle on a gasoline gallon equivalent basis. 

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Centralina Council of Governments
9815 David Taylor Drive
Charlotte, NC 28262

Part of the U.S.
DOE Clean Cities
National Network