The City of Tucson (Ariz.) has opened a new compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling facility to serve the city’s Environmental Services Department, transit agency, and Fleet Services.
The CNG facility, which opened April 20, provides 90 overnight time-fill CNG dispensers for the Environmental Services Department's refuse trucks while simultaneously providing the capability to fast-fill fuel up to six vehicles. There are two fast-fill dispensers each with two fill nozzles at the Fleet Services fuel island that can fuel four vehicles, while two fast-fill dispensers at the Sun Tran transit system can fuel two vehicles. The plant houses two natural gas compressors each using a 300-hp electric motor with an output of 1200SCFM (standard cubic feet) of natural gas.
Municipalities and corporate users have saved approximately $0.90 per mile in fuel costs by using CNG, according to the Environmental Services Department. While initial costs for CNG fueled vehicles is higher, the incremental cost of the CNG vehicles fueling infrastructure can be recouped in three to eight years, the department estimated.
Environmental Services has purchased 53 CNG powered collection trucks and will convert 75% of its fleet by 2020.