BY JAY F. MARKS Published: April 6, 2010

Natural gas advocates on Monday celebrated the opening of Oklahoma City’s first compressed natural gas fueling site at a convenience store.

The Total Express store at NW 164 and Rockwell opened last summer and recently added CNG to its fuel arsenal.

Todd Kelly, the company’s business development manager, called CNG the answer to high gasoline prices.

It sold for $1.49 a gallon Monday, compared with $2.79 a gallon for gasoline.

Oklahoma Energy Secretary Bobby Wegener said the opening of the store-based CNG fueling site was an important event for Oklahoma.

He said increased use of CNG as a transportation fuel can reduce imports of foreign oil, create jobs, cut emissions and boost the economy.

A look at benefits
Oklahoma Environment Secretary J.D. Strong fueled his CNG Honda at the new site, while touting the fuel’s benefits.

"CNG is by far the cleanest fossil fuel out there,” he said.

Kelly said Total Express likely will offer CNG at another new store at Northwest Expressway and Piedmont Road but could expand to more locations.

"I’d like to see it sooner rather than later,” he said.