The Metropolitan Tulsa Transit Authority (MTTA) of Tulsa, Okla., has awarded Clean Energy Fuels Corp. a contract to design, build, operate and maintain a compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling station to support the agency's growing fleet of CNG-powered buses and paratransit vehicles.
Slated to open in September 2011, the new Tulsa transit fueling facility will be equipped with 39 time-fill posts and one fast-fill CNG dispenser. The new station, located at MTTA's vehicle maintenance facility, will support the agency's accelerating program to replace 100 percent of its diesel-powered bus fleet with clean, green, cost-efficient CNG models. Currently MTTA deploys 63 fixed-route buses and 49 paratransit vehicles in a 197-square-mile area that includes the communities of Tulsa, Jenks, Broken Arrow and Sand Springs. Annual ridership tops 2.8 million passenger trips.
In 2011, Tulsa Transit expects to add 35 new CNG paratransit vehicles and 15 CNG buses to its fleet, replacing diesel models as they are retired from service this year.
Costing less than diesel, natural gas fuel produces up to 23% lower greenhouse gas emissions in medium to heavy-duty vehicle applications. U.S. Department of Energy reports estimate that 98% of the natural gas consumed in the U.S. is sourced in the U.S. and Canada. Using natural gas fuel can eliminate tons of emissions from entering the atmosphere throughout the operating life of a typical bus fleet, while also lowering a transit agency's operating costs significantly.
James Harger, chief marketing officer, Clean Energy, said, "Tulsa Transit places significant value on the reduced operating costs and environmental benefits offered by natural gas. Across the United States, Clean Energy is partnering with many leading public transit agencies like Tulsa Transit to reliably fuel over 5,500 buses daily. We commend the Metropolitan Tulsa Transit Authority for taking such strong, positive action to bring the benefits of clean-burning natural gas fuel to the communities they serve."