To make the Andersen Window dedicated service work, a new CNG fueling station was installed by U.S. Oil at a truckstop near Andersen's facility in Menomonie. It is the result of a partnership between Dart, Andersen, U.S. Oil (a division of U.S. Venture Inc.), Breakthrough Fuel, Excel Energy as the gas supplier, and the Cedar Country Cenex Cooperative truckstop.
Natural gas reaches the fuel station by pipeline, where equipment compresses it on-site to 3,600 pounds per square inch.
Despite the limited number of fueling locations, Dart sees big potential for the fuel, especially as truckstops add CNG to their services. Dart President David Oren says other shippers have already approached the company with an interest in beginning their own CNG operations.
"We're excited about CNG because it opens a whole new way to improve efficiency," Oren says. "While initial equipment cost is high and delivery range is limited, CNG offers some big advantages: much lower cost per mile, less price volatility, and dependable domestic supplies. Best of all, natural gas is the cleanest fuel available, producing 28% fewer greenhouse gas emissions than diesel."
While a CNG-fueled truck costs about $45,000 more to purchase than a diesel-powered tractor, potential fuel savings make that a reasonable investment, Dart says. Fuel cost savings with CNG can reach $25,000-$35,000 per year per truck, depending on miles driven.