Government Rebates and Refunds for CNG Conversion
There are a couple big pieces of legislature in the works called the NATGAS Act and NGEAR. Read more about them below. Here is a complete list of Federal and State CNG conversion incentives in effect right now. Let us know if we missed anything. Below is some of the only good news about potential FEDERAL programs.
Read the latest update here.
Early in 2011 we saw legislature pass in the US House of Representatives that could breathe life into many of the federal NGV programs. Congressmen John Sullivan (R-OK), Dan Boren (D-OK), John Larson (D-CT) and Kevin Brady (R-TX) have introduced H.R. 1380, the "New Alternative Transportation to Give Americans Solutions" (NAT GAS) Act. This bill will be the legislative vehicle to replace millions of barrels of imported oil with domestic natural gas, especially for fleet vehicles.
The original sponsors - two Republicans and two Democrats - said the bill would "offer limited tax credits and federal regulatory changes to encourage the production and purchase of natural gas vehicles" in the United States. Congressman Sullivan who is the Vice Chair of the House Energy and Power Subcommittee said that "69 percent of the oil consumed in America is used for transportation, two-thirds of which we import from foreign nations." Congressman Larson, who is the Chair of the Democratic House Caucus, said we have enough domestic natural gas to meet our needs "for the next 100 years." He also said, "If we start making cars and trucks that run on natural gas, there's the potential to create over a half a million American jobs."
Dan Boren and Kevin Brady also commented on the new legislation. Brady said, "Targeting business fleets and cargo trucks that offer the greatest promise, this bill creates a strong five-year window to build, buy and refuel natural gas vehicles here at home." Boren made a point of the bipartisan nature of the bill saying, "We must move America off OPEC oil and give our citizens some options at the fuel pump. It is supported by some of the most progressive, as well as by some of the most conservative, members of Congress."
According to the press release, the bill, H.R. 1380, was introduced today with 76 bipartisan original cosponsors in the House and has been endorsed by both President Obama and T. Boone Pickens as part of the nation's energy solution.
UPDATE 10/1/11:The NATGAS ACT has not made it to the House of Representatives yet. There is a lot going on right now in DC, if you haven't noticed. However, this CNG Bill could hit the floor any week now for discussion and possible vote. We give it a 50/50 shot at passing. While the CNG Bill provides over $5 Billion in subsidies for an alternative fuel that actually has immediate potential, there are many congress members that don't think this a good time to pass ANYTHING that spends more taxpayer money. The NATGAS ACT has support on both sides of the isle, though.
UPDATE 2/19/12:Nothing much has changed with the subsidy-filled NATGAS ACT. It still sits in the House of Representatives, likely waiting for gasoline to get above $5.00 per gallon.
"NGEAR Act" UPDATE 2/19/12:The NGEAR Bill (Natural Gas Energy and Alternative Rewards) has been submitted to Congress by Senator Robert Casey (Democrat) from Pennsylvania. On February 3rd he released the details of the Bill, which is far less comprehensive than the NATGAS Act, but does bring attention to abundant, clean, natural gas and its role with vehicles.
NGEAR promotes a transition to natural gas vehicles by supporting two main goals: 1. Municipalities get incentives to purchase NEW transit and school buses that operate on CNG and 2. Extend tax credits on CNG fuel and fueling stations.
Although the Bill stops short of incentives specifically for CNG car conversions, NGEAR states that local governments and businesses will get a 30% rebate ,up to $15,000, for any new purchase for transit or school buses running on CNG. It also extends to 2016 a 30% tax credit, up to $30,000, for the expansion of CNG infrastructure like filling stations. This is great for CNG car conversion owners since it simply makes it easier to find those precious CNG pump stations. Perhaps most beneficial to CNG car owners is the NGEAR's extenstion of the 50 cent per gallon alternative fuel tax credit. This will be available wherever CNG is sold and keep prices a little lower. While the debate on government subisidy for CNG is ongoing and a matter of personal opinion, SkyCNG is happy that this cheap, abundant, domestic, and clean alternative fuel is getting more of the spotlight. When more people are aware of the benefits of CNG it will just be a matter of time before the free market takes over (hopefully) and more people can run their vehicle for one or two bucks per gallon.