Truck stop industry trade association NATSO is urging the Department of Transportation to work closely with private, exit-based businesses to improve incentives for establishing alternative fuel corridors on our nation’s highways.

Section 1413 of the FAST Act directs DOT to identify and establish strategic fueling corridors to support alternative-fueling stations, including electric, hydrogen, propane and natural gas fueling infrastructure. The refueling infrastructure must support both passenger and commercial vehicles in both the near and long-term to make use of alternative fueled vehicles a more viable option for consumers and businesses.

In comments filed with DOT, NATSO urged the agency to implement Section 1413 of the FAST Act in a way that would strengthen the incentive for private investment in alternative-fuel infrastructure, saying that “state governments should not provide transportation fuel paid for with tax dollars.”

“NATSO members’ locations are well positioned to play a vital role in establishing alternative fuel corridors,” said Lisa Mullings, NATSO president and CEO. “The best way to accomplish the Administration’s objectives of increasing alternative fueling infrastructure throughout the country is for the government to work with existing exit-based establishments to install such infrastructure at privately run businesses, including travel plazas and truckstops.”

By working with private businesses, the government can further enhance the incentive for private sector investment while consumer demand is still low, according to NATSO. The association believes that fuel retailers are best suited to meet infrastructure needs as the next generation of clean and alternative fueled vehicles emerges.

“Furthering the deployment and use of charging and alternative fueling facilities is best realized if the travel plaza and truckstop industry’s business environment is recognized as an asset,” said Mullings. “Building alternative fuel facilities at truckstops provides the opportunity for an incremental investment at an existing facility.  This is a very efficient way of accomplishing the Administration’s goals.”