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CNG Station Opens in California’s Silicon Valley

Santa Clara County in California has set aggressive goals for greenhouse gas emissions reductions that would reduce the government’s greenhouse gas emission by 80 percent before 2050 to reduce its carbon footprint.  Today, the County of Santa Clara cut the ribbon for its new CNG fueling station at its Fleet Division on Junction Road in San Jose. The project is a public-private partnership between the County and Trillium CNG, with offset funding from the California Energy Commission (CEC).

The County has entered in to a concessionaire agreement with Trillium for the management and operation of the fueling station, including fuel prices and collecting station revenues.  In exchange, Trillium will compensate the County a flat fee of $3,000 per month for the term of the contract, plus $0.25 per GGE of CNG dispensed.  Although total revenue will depend on the amount of CNG dispensed, the County estimates the revenue from concession payments would total $87,000 per year.  Additionally, this CNG fueling station will help the County to achieve at least 25 percent of its fleet as alternative fuel vehicles, saving at least $1.25 per gasoline gallon equivalent.  The County expects to save a minimum of $7,500 per year in fuel costs within the first year of operation.

The Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) Community Air Risk Evaluation Program and further studies have shown that Santa Clara County has several high risk pollution corridors that are adjacent to communities.  With the new CNG fueling station and a growing fleet of CNG vehicles, the County will be able to reduce harmful emissions from its vehicles.  At the same time, the station will also provide a reliable, local source of CNG for both the County and the public.

The total project cost is $1,512,800, partially offset by a $300,000 reimbursement from a CEC grant. The California Energy Commission has provided a $300,000 grant towards the costs of the station, part of the $97 million for development and deployment of compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles and fueling stations statewide. The grant came through the Energy Commission’s Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Transportation Program (ARFVTP).