Petroleum/General Equipment: CNG Update

Speedway, U.S. Oil among retailers expanding compressed-natural-gas sites

Compressed natural gas (CNG) is on its way up—but blink, and you won’t miss it. There is a slow but consistent rollout of the alternative-fueling option crossing the country via both retailers, fleets and state and local governments.

Speedway LLC, Enon, Ohio, is partnering with IGS CNG Services to build a CNG fueling station in Findlay, Ohio, the same town where Speedway parent Marathon Petroleum Corp. is based. Construction is set to begin early this summer.

The site will serve businesses that have converted their fleet to natural gas, both those in the area and those traveling through. It will be IGS CNG Services’ sixth location and Speedway’s second. Speedway has another CNG fueling site in Monona, Wis., in partnership with a local gas and electric utility company.

Speedway president Tony Kenney told CSP recently that the company plans to open four to six CNG sites this year with a partnership model.

Based in Dublin, Ohio, IGS CNG is focusing on building CNG stations throughout the Midwest. It currently has five public sites in West Virginia and Ohio. Its services include ownership and operation of fast-fill CNG fueling stations; consulting and modeling to optimize ROI and capital requirements for fleets; and price-risk-mitigation services.

U.S. Oil’s Gain Clean Fuel subsidiary is expanding the number of its sites in Ohio. It opened a station this April in Columbus, Ohio, for FST Logistics Inc., which is also converting its fleet to CNG.

Gain Clean Fuel plans to have a station every 250 to 300 miles in the lower 48 states, according to Columbus Business First.

U.S. Oil is a division of U.S. Venture Inc., an energy and transportation products distributor and marketer. Beyond its Gain Clean Fuel subsidiary, U.S. Venture’s Express Convenience Centers division owns and operates 15 c-stores in six Midwestern states.

In Wisconsin, the company is partnering with Time Transport Inc. for the addition of three new Gain Clean Fuel CNG stations to supply Time’s CNG fleet. One Gain station located south of Milwaukee along I-94 in Sturtevant, Wis., opened April 7. The other two will be located in the Chicago area.

The three new stations, like all other Gain stations, will provide fast-fill capabilities, are strategically located for carriers along major shipping corridors and will be open for public use. They also have fleet-card acceptance capabilities.

In exchange for U.S. Oil constructing the three facilities, Time Transport commits to purchasing more than 1 million gallons of Gain CNG per year.

Other retailers recently focusing on CNG include Kum & Go, West Des Moines, Iowa; Hutchinson Oil in Elk City, Okla.; and La Crosse, Wis.-based Kwik Trip.