Drivers' interest could be snagged by better CNG mousetrap

The Oklahoman Editorial Published: February 28, 2012

The official (if not actual) policy of the Obama administration is to encourage the use of natural gas. It's cleaner than other fossil fuels. Demand for gas (unlike oil) can be entirely satisfied with domestic supplies.

Conversion of corporate fleets to run on CNG, as Chesapeake itself has been doing, is continuing apace. The lighter, larger, cheaper tank that the Chesapeake/3M venture promises may help entice more motorists to run their personal vehicles on CNG. This would benefit the environment and state revenue as well as give the U.S. more leverage in the international energy sphere.

Despite month after month of declining natural gas prices and the current uptick in gasoline prices, the world has yet to beat its way to the CNG door. Perhaps some simplification of the CNG message is in order.

Ralph Waldo Emerson is credited with saying, “Build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a path to your door.” This was another writer's revision of what Emerson actually said, which was something like this: “If a man has good corn or wood or board or pigs to sell, you will find a broad, hard-beaten road to his house.”

Little did he know that corn itself would become a major source of motor vehicle fuel. How much more of a fuel source for cars and trucks could CNG become?

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