Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, joined by natural gas industry leaders and state highways officials, today signed an executive order establishing the Natural Gas Vehicle Task Force to assess the feasibility of transitioning the state's vehicle fleet to natural gas as a fuel source and developing an infrastructure to support compressed natural gas vehicles.
"West Virginia is blessed with abundant natural resources," said Gov. Tomblin. "With our state being one of the leading producers of natural gas in the nation, it is important for us to explore the feasibility of using this resource to fuel our state's transportation needs. In addition to expanding the market for natural gas, we would lessen our dependence on foreign oil, save taxpayer money and create new jobs."
Executive Order No. 10-12 establishes the Natural Gas Vehicle Task Force. Citizen members of the Task Force will have education, experience or specialized knowledge regarding the natural gas industry, alternative fuels, petroleum marketing, transportation, and safety.
The Task Force will perform an analysis of the cost savings that could be realized by governmental entities that convert gasoline or diesel-fueled vehicles to natural gas-fueled vehicles; research and analyze the potential for the State to operate pilot public access natural gas fueling stations; and explore interest in partnerships with and among natural gas producers, infrastructure developers, vehicle manufacturers, and other industry leaders to expand natural gas fueling infrastructure and investing in natural gas fuel solutions; along with a number of other duties.