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CNG - North to Alaska !

April 15, 2012

Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) is a fast growing fuel source for transportation. CNG refuel stops exist as far north as Prince George BC, but not down the Alaska Highway or in Alaska.

Compressed natural gas (CNG) is a fossil fuel substitute for gasoline (petrol), diesel, or propane/LPG. Although its combustion does produce greenhouse gases, it is a more environmentally clean alternative to those fuels, and it is much safer than other fuels in the event of a spill (natural gas is lighter than air, and disperses quickly when released).

The advantage of CNG:

1. Due to the absence of any lead or benzene content in CNG, the lead fouling of spark plugs is eliminated.
2. CNG-powered vehicles have lower maintenance costs when compared with other fossil fuel-powered vehicles.
3. Fuel savings with lower prices. Natural gas is 25 to 40 per cent cheaper than gasoline and diesel. A natural gas vehicle produces 20 to 30 per cent fewer greenhouse gas emissions
compared to a gasoline or diesel vehicle.
4. Increased life of lubricating oils, as CNG does not contaminate and dilute the crankcase oil.
5. CNG mixes easily and evenly in air being a gaseous fuel.
6. CNG is less likely to auto-ignite on hot surfaces, since it has a high auto-ignition temperature (540 °C) and a narrow range (5%-15%) of flammability.[8]
7. Less pollution and more efficiency: CNG emits significantly less pollutants such as carbon dioxide (CO2), unburned hydrocarbons (UHC), carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur oxides (SOx) and particulate matter (PM), compared to petrol.

The disadvantages:

1.Capital cost of converting to CNG.
2.Takes up considerable space.
3.Lack of service stations.
4.Lack of maintenance personnel.


Let’s face it cheap natural gas is here to stay. North America has a large surplus of gas, particularly in BC and Alaska. CNG as a fuel is growing, particularly with larger transportation vehicles-trucks and buses. Extension of CNG service stations along the Alaska Highway would make sense. CNG is coming—the only question is when.