Chrysler has landed orders from 19 states to supply Ram 2500 Heavy Duty pickup trucks running on compressed natural gas.
The move comes as 22 states form a coalition to promote the use of the cheap, plentiful and relatively clean fuel. The coalition has told U.S. automakers that if they build vehicles capable of running on CNG orders will run anywhere from 5,000 to 10,000 annually.
“That should be enough to get them to move,” said John Hickenlooper, the governor of Colorado which has been one of the states taking the lead in the effort to promote the use of CNG.
Compressed natural gas is gaining a lot of attention lately. Traditionally used for home heating as well as industrial applications, CNG is winning converts even in the environmental movement. While it is considered a fossil fuel its chemical structure contains less carbon than petroleum or coal and that means that in a motor vehicle it produces 60 to 90% fewer smog-causing pollutants and 30 to 40% less greenhouse gas emissions than gasoline, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.