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A Boost for Natural Gas as a Transport Fuel

The new CAFE fuel economy standards have been finalized, and they could actually give a boost to natural gas vehicles. The standards, which require automakers' full lineups to average 35.5 MPG by 2016, and 54.5 MPG by 2025, will allow automakers to get credits for natural gas vehicles to use toward hitting these MPG numbers. This will likely help Honda in the short term, which offers a natural gas Civic, and could help Westport Innovations see more demand from the major automakers. Ultimately, infrastructure is still the main thing holding back natural gas as a commercial transport fuel. Analyst Brendan Byrnes doesn't expect natural gas vehicles to be widely adopted by the mainstream anytime soon, but this could be a helpful step in the process. 

One area where natural gas makes a lot of sense is for fleets. A huge potential winner in this field is Clean Energy Fuels, which focuses its natural gas efforts primarily on trucking and fleets. It is poised to make a big impact on an essential industry. Read all about Clean Energy Fuels in our brand-new report. Just click here to get started.

Austin Smith owns shares of Ford. Brendan Byrnes owns shares of Ford and General Motors. The Motley Fool owns shares of Ford and Westport Innovations. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend Ford, General Motors, and Westport Innovations. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read/Post Comments (3) | Recommend This Article (4)

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Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On August 31, 2012, at 6:32 PM, fingerlakes54 wrote:

    OMG--It about time we Americans took it serious that oil is a antique fuel and we needed to move onto something domestic and for the time --plentiful. The problem I see is that we are turning our availabilty of a transport fuel over to the same people who have caused oil and gasoline supplies to become short and have driven prices unexpectedly high and caused chaos in our economy. I suppose natural gas is the mid-step needed to finally move onto a renewable fuel that no one can control the entire market for. It makes a lot of sense because we will no longer need military involvement all around the world just to insure a steady flow of oil.

  • Report this Comment On September 02, 2012, at 10:13 PM, smuggest wrote:

    You can call NG a "mid-step" only if you are ready to be on that step for 100+ yrs because that's exactly what is going to happen! I personally think that NG is going to change the whole world energy dynamic.

  • Report this Comment On September 04, 2012, at 9:47 AM, temachine wrote:

    It's funny how these things are spoken about as happening in the future. I've been driving a cng powered ford f250 for two years now. My truck runs only on cng. I have saved a lot of money on fuel and I've seen how many stations have been upgraded and built in my state over the last two years. There is enough infrastructure available right now in Oklahoma to drive anywhere in the state on cng easily. I have paid between .78 cents a gallon and 1.35 a gallon. I don't have to wonder about the future of ng. I am living the future of ng. good luck to all you gasoline addicts.

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