CNG: Where It Comes From and How It’s Used

CNG: Where It Comes From and How It’s Used

Natural gas is at the forefront of the growing conversation surrounding sustainability and clean energy. Corporations, municipalities and some consumer car manufacturers are utilizing compressed natural gas (CNG) as an alternative fuel source to diesel or propane.

Compressed natural gas, in its most basic form, comes from the ground. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, natural gas is found near oil wells during extraction. The natural gas is separated from oil and compressed to 3,600 pounds per square inch to store in CNG vehicles.

CNG vehicles utilize compressed natural gas as fuel in a comparable way to petroleum derivative vehicles. These vehicles contain spark-ignited combustion engines, which work similarly to non-CNG vehicles. In comparison to petroleum derivatives, compressed natural gas is a more abundant and consistent fuel source. Because CNG is sourced underground in the United States, it has steadier prices, as factors like weather and importation are irrelevant. With compressed natural gas, the cost of petroleum derivatives that run off of the world’s oil prices is unimportant.

CNG is also safer than vehicles that use petroleum derivatives like propane because of its lower flash point, or when it ignites. Vehicles that utilize this alternate fuel also have less emission pollution than their counterparts. Safer and cleaner to use than petroleum derivatives, compressed natural gas releases less toxic exhaust and CNG vehicles are often quieter than other trucks.

Alongside the use of compressed natural gas is renewable natural gas (RNG). This natural gas is gathered from places like landfills or dairy farms where there is a high presence of methane. RNG also has the ability to be used in natural gas vehicles and can be compressed to CNG.

While many corporate and municipal vehicles utilize CNG, this fuel alternative is also available for everyday consumers who drive smaller cars. If you don’t own a CNG vehicle and want to, most cars have a conversion ability with the proper kit and installation assistance. With a new fuel tank and various other parts, a new or recently bought vehicle can be converted.

Ozinga introduced our CNG trucks in 2011 and specializes in converting vehicles to CNG and installing CNG fueling stations. Contact an energy specialist to learn more.

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