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Utah Becoming Hot Spot for Natural Gas Cars
26 August 2007
Deseret Morning News. A combination of tax incentives and low fuel prices is making Utah an emerging hot spot for natural gas vehicles.
“We have the cheapest gas in the nation,” said Gordon Larsen, Questar Gas’ supervisor of natural gas vehicles. “The demand here is really, really high,” he said. “Fleets have been running on it for some time, but the general public is really taking it up right now.”
With natural gas costing the equivalent of 73.6 cents per gallon, a car that gets 25 miles per gallon can go 100 miles for $2.94, compared to $10.80 with gasoline at $2.70 a gallon. Questar's vehicle fueling stations have seen a 60 percent increase in use over the past two years, Larsen said.
Questar passes along a 50-cent-per-gallon tax incentive that has driven prices in Utah to record lows. The natural gas utility has also created an infrastructure of fueling stations throughout the state that is second only to California’s.
Utah consumers who buy a new vehicle that runs only on natural gas qualify for a $4,000 tax credit. Utah will kick in another $3,000 in tax credits through its own program.
At this point, selection is limited to the Honda Civic GX.
Utah’s tax credit will pay up to half of what it costs to convert a vehicle, up to $2,500, or half of what a factory CNG vehicle’s incremental cost over a gasoline vehicle costs, up to $3,000.
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