I recently attended the grand opening of a compressed natural gas fueling center at a Love's Travel Stops in northeast Oklahoma City. Later that day, Love's opened another CNG fueling center in Norman. This year alone, Love's is partnering with Chesapeake Energy Corp. to open CNG pumps at a second Oklahoma City location and seven other cities.
Love's isn't the only Oklahoma retailer joining a CNG movement that will bring the number of fueling centers in Oklahoma to more than 75 by year's end. For natural gas vehicles to become more accepted, the fueling infrastructure must come first. Oklahoma's leading the way. State companies and municipalities are converting fleets to CNG. State officials recently joined Colorado officials to promote CNG's benefits to automakers.
CNG is a clean, affordable, domestically produced fuel that represents an outstanding opportunity to move America away from dependence on nations that are often hostile to America. It makes sense to use a domestic resource with a 100-plus-year supply that can be accessed safely, cleanly and at a great price. Oklahoma is one of the top three natural gas states and is setting the CNG bar high. Greater demand for gas means more Oklahoma jobs and more revenue to support core services such as roads, schools, human services and public safety.
CNG isn't intended to replace traditional fuels in the short term. But thanks to the foresight and commitment of the state and private firms, it's quickly becoming a viable alternative. That's exciting for Oklahoma's future.
Mayor Mick Cornett, Oklahoma City