FortisBC awards an initial $6 million to convert fleets to natural gas,
with further incentives to follow
SURREY, BC, March 1, 2013 /CNW/ - Communities around the province will
soon see more natural gas-powered vehicles on the road after FortisBC
awarded approximately $6 million in incentives to transportation
operators to purchase compressed natural gas (CNG)-fueled vehicles for
"These organizations have shown a commitment to choosing natural gas as
a transportation fuel solution," said Doug Stout, vice president of
energy solutions and external relations at FortisBC. "Building on the
initial successes we've had with natural gas vehicles and the benefits
they bring to the environment and our gas customers, this program is
making widespread use of natural gas for transportation a reality."
The program was made possible following the creation of the Government
of B.C.'s Greenhouse Gas Reduction regulation.
"The government of B.C. is committed to ensuring natural gas is a
significant part of the transportation sector because it is cheaper,
cleaner and abundant in B.C.," said Transportation and Infrastructure
Minister Mary Polak. "This new program will help encourage more
transportation companies to use natural gas as the transportation fuel
choice of the future."
A total of approximately $6 million for CNG vehicles was awarded to the
following vehicle fleet operators:
BC Transit - $937,500
BFI Canada - $937,958
City of Vancouver - $1,854,600
Cold Star Freight System Inc. - $450,997
Emterra Environmental - $745,500
School District No. 23 (Kelowna) - $67,893
Smithrite Disposal Ltd. - $953,775
The incentives were granted through a public and transparent selection
process. The $6 million awarded is part of a $104.5 million program
announced in May 2012 to assist qualifying heavy-duty fleet operators
to purchase natural gas vehicles. The $104.5 million will help offset
the cost of switching fleets to natural gas, fund training and upgrades
to facilities to safely maintain natural gas vehicles, and to build CNG
or liquid natural gas (LNG) fuelling stations.
In addition to decreased greenhouse gas emissions and noise, refuelling
for CNG vehicles is estimated to be 25 to 50 per cent less expensive
than refuelling traditional diesel vehicles due to the current
difference in prices.
Under the program, FortisBC provides funding to offset a percentage of
the incremental capital cost between a qualifying natural gas vehicle
and the cost of an equivalent diesel vehicle. Depending on the
agreement, FortisBC could fund up to 75 per cent of the incremental
cost of the natural gas vehicles.
Rounds of funding will continue over the next four years, with the next
round beginning April, 2013. Eligible heavy-duty fleet operators can
learn more by emailing email@example.com to receive updates or by visiting http://fortisbc.com/ngt.
FortisBC gas utility customers benefit from additional volumes of
natural gas for transportation moving through FortisBC's pipeline
system. Better year-round, utilization of FortisBC's infrastructure,
especially during the summer months when heating requirements are
reduced, helps to keep natural gas delivery rates low for all
FortisBC is a regulated utility focused on providing safe and reliable
energy, including natural gas, electricity, propane and thermal energy
solutions. FortisBC employs more than 2,300 British Columbians and
serves approximately 1.1 million customers in more than 135 B.C.
communities. FortisBC is indirectly wholly owned by Fortis Inc., the
largest investor-owned distribution utility in Canada. FortisBC owns
and operates four regulated hydroelectric generating plants,
approximately 7,000 kilometres of transmission and distribution power
lines and approximately 47,000 kilometres of natural gas transmission
and distribution pipelines. FortisBC Inc., FortisBC Energy Inc.,
FortisBC Energy (Vancouver Island) Inc., and FortisBC Energy (Whistler)
Inc. do business as FortisBC. Fortis Inc. shares are listed on the
Toronto Stock Exchange and trade under the symbol FTS. Additional
information can be accessed at www.fortisinc.com or www.sedar.com.
For further information:
Corporate Communications Advisor