Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART)

FL: HART Fuels its Future with Clean, Affordable Energy

HART is looking to the future with a view toward reducing its carbon footprint and fuel expenses by incorporating clean-burning compressed natural gas (CNG).

Every Day is Earth Day at HART, that's why its positioning itself for the future by exploring cleaner, more affordable, eco-friendly compressed natural gas (CNG) fuel alternatives. CNG is abundantly produced within the United States and offers a more environmentally responsible alternative to traditional fossil fuels like gasoline and diesel.

CNG is efficient, cost effective and can slash fuel and maintenance costs by as much as 40 percent compared to gasoline or diesel, without sacrificing engine power and performance. Not only is it more affordable than gas, diesel, or liquid propane but it produces significantly fewer greenhouse gases. Also, made-in-America CNG helps reduce pollution while simultaneously reducing the nation's dependence on foreign sources of energy.

CNG can keep cars, trucks, and buses moving far into the future, too, because the U.S. has an estimated 100-year supply of natural gas. Currently almost all of the CNG consumed in North America can be domestically produced, helping create jobs at home while offering a positive alternative to the $400 billion a year that America currently spends on purchases of foreign oil. That's why HART is preparing for the transition in April 2014 to utilize CNG as a viable fuel source for powering its fleet of buses and vans in the future.

HART is well on its way to making CNG a reality for its over 200 service vehicles.

Last September, HART maintenance managers and training instructors completed specialized training at the Natural Gas Vehicle Institute. Two months later the HART CNG project team visited the transit facility in Fort Worth, TX, where buses have been fueled with CNG for the past 20 years.

During the coming year maintenance technicians and bus operators will begin their own CNG training, and next spring ground will be broken for construction of HART's first CNG fueling station.