The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) recently awarded $23.8 million for natural gas transit projects across the nation, but Gwinnett County Transit has been using compressed natural gas since the start-up of the local routes in late 2002.
Compressed natural gas, or CNG, is an alternative to gasoline that’s made by compressing natural gas to less than 1 percent of its volume. CNG is drawn from domestically drilled natural gas wells or in conjunction with crude oil production. It is odorless, colorless, and tasteless.
The 28 buses running the Gwinnett County Transit local routes run on 100 percent CNG. Additionally, about half of the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority express fleet, which runs and refuels out of the Gwinnett County Transit facility, uses CNG. In 2011, these buses used 496,437 gas gallon equivalents of fuel at a cost of only $403,788. By using this natural gas alternative, Gwinnett County saved nearly 500,000 gallons of diesel fuel.