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Natural gas highway will pass through Oklahoma City

Clean Energy Fuels is building a liquefied natural gas fueling station in Oklahoma City as part of its natural gas highway, a cross-country network of about 150 fueling stations for heavy-duty trucks.
BY JAY F. MARKS jmarks@opubco.com Published: May 25, 2012
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The natural gas revolution will continue this summer in Oklahoma City.

Clean Energy Fuels will build a liquefied natural gas fueling station at the Flying J Travel Plaza at Interstate 40 and Morgan Road by the end of July.

Greg Roche, the company's vice president of infrastructure, said Clean Energy plans to build 150 stations for its natural gas highway by the end of next year.

“It's more than the industry's ever built,” Roche said.

Clean Energy was co-founded by Oklahoma native T. Boone Pickens, a vocal advocate of using natural gas to fuel the nation's trucking fleet.

The California-based company got a $150 million boost last year from Chesapeake Energy Corp. to accelerate its development of public LNG fueling stations.

“There is increasing interest in natural gas as a transportation fuel, particularly in the heavy-duty truck and fleet category,” Pickens spokesman Jay Rosser said. “America's energy future, our national security and our environment improves with the addition of each natural gas fueling station.

“This is happening because of private sector and state government leadership. With federal leadership, we can expedite this progress.”

Roche said Clean Energy plans to complete 70 natural gas fueling stations this year and 80 more next year.

There is only one planned for Oklahoma so far, but “that's just the starting point,” he said.

Roche said LNG, which costs about $1.50 a gallon less than diesel, is best suited to heavy-duty trucks.

Clean Energy's first choice is to partner with existing truck stops to put in LNG fueling stations, but the company will build them if necessary.

Roche said the company is aiming to get a station in place about every 250 miles on long-haul trucking routes, with additional locations inside large metropolitan areas.

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