Shale glut means $1-a-gallon savings at the pump for trucking firm
Chad Porter wants to run his 18-wheeler trucks on frozen natural gas along a highway that crosses Canada's Rocky Mountains even before the world's longest chain of refueling stations gets built to keep them fueled, Bloomberg reports. The chief operating officer of oil services company Ferus Inc. bought two vehicles to test liquefied natural gas and reckons switching from diesel may cut 22% from his fuel bill, or about $1 a gallon. At the moment, Calgary-based Ferus uses mobile tankers to refuel his trucks, which cost about $99,000 more than conventional vehicles, adding expense to a project that's about saving money. A Royal Dutch Shell project will make it easier to fill up. Shell's plan to spend $250 million on an LNG plant and a string of filling stations is the biggest single investment yet in making frozen gas a transport fuel, a shift advocated by proponents of energy independence including billionaire investor T. Boone Pickens. Switching engines to run on LNG is becoming economic because a glut of fuel from North America's shale rocks has made the United States the world's largest natural-gas producer and forced prices to record discounts versus crude oil. "LNG holds great potential as a transport fuel," Mark Williams, Shell's downstream director, said in a speech earlier this month. "North America, for example, now has a century of gas supplies at current consumption rates. So gas is likely to gain market share in transportation." Read the full story here.
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