Shares of natural gas fueling company Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ:CLNE) jumped as much as 12.5% in trading Monday after the company announced a fuel and infrastructure deal with Total (NYSE:TOT). Shares were still up 9.6% at 3 p.m. EDT and Total's shares had fallen 2.2% on the day.
The two companies announced today that they have signed a memorandum of understanding to create a 50/50 joint venture to develop renewable natural gas (RNG) production and infrastructure in the U.S. Total will provide $50 million to the venture along with $65 million in credit support and $45 million for contracted RNG fueling infrastructure, while Clean Energy Fuels will put in $30 million.
Clean Energy Fuels sees a huge advantage in RNG because it provides fuel as well as a carbon-negative rating from the California Air Resources Board. That's lower than electric batteries, which could be valuable as regulators focus more on carbon emissions.
BP (NYSE:BP) is also partnering with Clean Energy Fuels to develop, own, and operate RNG facilities at dairies and other agriculture facilities in North America.
These deals expand the transition to renewable natural gas for Clean Energy Fuels' infrastructure and having two of the biggest oil companies in the world in your corner isn't a bad thing. If trucking customers continue to transition to natural gas fuel this could be a big opportunity for Clean Energy Fuels. Management seems to have the supply side of the market in a solid position, now it's the demand side that needs attention in 2021.