Photo courtesy of City of Tulsa

Photo courtesy of City of Tulsa

The City of Tulsa, Okla., is officially opening its second public compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling station to fuel its fleet and public vehicles. State and local officials will attend the grand opening of the $1.75 million station on June 8. Funding for the fueling station came from the “2014 Improve Our Tulsa Sales Tax” funding package. 

The unmanned station will be open to the public seven days a week, 24 hours a day. The station will fuel the city’s growing CNG fleet, as well as Tulsa transit buses and public vehicles. The city currently operates 58 CNG vehicles (19 sedans, 30 light-duty trucks, and nine heavy-duty trucks). The station is canopied with two dispensers. The dispensers will have standard half-inch nozzles as well as high-volume three-quarter-inch transit nozzles for greater flow rates. The station can accommodate light-duty vehicles, large buses, and Class 8 heavy-duty trucks.

The new CNG station will have the capacity to produce over 600,000 gasoline gallon equivalents (GGEs) per year with a direct fill rate of 3.6 GGEs per minute. This expands the city’s CNG fueling capacity from 250,000 GGEs to over 850,000 GGEs, an increase of more than 240%. The new station is designed to allow for future growth. In future years, the city will utilize fueling revenues to add a second compressor and additional storage.

This past year, the city saved $20,000 in fuel costs by using CNG. The city’s current cost for CNG is $0.95 per GGE, which is about $0.65 less per gallon than unleaded and diesel fuel. As petroleum prices increase, the city expects to realize greater fuel savings.

The grand opening will coincide with NGV America’s “2017 West Coast-to-East Coast NGV Road Rally.” Rally participants will drive CNG vehicles from Long Beach, Calif., to Washington, D.C., and the Tulsa stop will occur during the June 8th grand opening ceremony.

The City of Tulsa recently solicited help from Kelly Reagan, fleet administrator with the City of Columbus Ohio, to develop a Green Fleet Action Plan. The plan outlines the city’s fuel and emissions reduction goals for 2017 through 2020. Goals of the plan include replacing 50 petroleum-fueled trucks with CNG units and increasing CNG consumption by 60,000 GGEs by 2020. The new CNG fueling station provides the required infrastructure to attain these goals.