IBJNews

Pickens' natural-gas plan may prove boon to truck builders

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

T. Boone Pickens, founder and chairman of Dallas-based BP Capital LLC, said converting the U.S. trucking industry to natural gas will benefit manufacturers including Columbus-based Cummins Inc. and Paccar Inc.’s Peterbilt.

Pickens wants buses and trucks that run on natural gas to replace the diesel and gasoline engines that some think contribute to global warming and increase U.S. oil imports that cost the country about $1 billion a day.

Legislation to spur investment in natural gas vehicles over diesel, which doubles a 2005 tax incentive, has enough support in the House and Senate to pass by the end of May, Pickens said Thursday during an interview in New York. Truck makers with natural gas technology will boost production when the bill passes.

“Kenworth’s got it, Peterbilt’s got it, Volvo, Cummins, they’ve all got it,” Pickens said. “This is going to happen.”

Peterbilt in August began taking orders for two new natural gas truck models made in Texas that use Cummins Westport engines. Cummins Westport is a venture with Westport Innovations Inc. Paccar, based in Bellevue, Wash., builds Kenworth and Peterbilt trucks.

Sweden’s Volvo AB, the world’s second-largest truckmaker, also makes trucks that run on natural gas, as well as flex-fuel vehicles that use either gas or diesel, the company said on its Web site.

The bill offers tax credits to cover 80 percent of the added cost to buy natural gas-fueled vehicles over conventional engines. The credits would reach as high as $12,500 for passenger cars and light trucks and as much as $64,000 for heavy vehicles, according to a summary of the legislation. Filling station tax credits would be doubled to as much as $100,000.

There are more than 250 million vehicles on the road in the United States and, of those, 142,000 are powered by natural gas, Pickens said. Pickens, whose plan for autos would initially emphasize heavy-duty trucks, said he’d like to see 1.3 million trucks running on natural gas by 2014.

Pickens in 2008 started a $60 million promotion for a national energy plan that relies on domestically produced natural gas and wind energy to cut U.S. dependence on foreign oil. Now he’s focused on replacing fleet cars and trucks that run on gasoline with those that use cleaner-burning natural gas.

The Pickens measure has the support of Senator Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat and the majority leader, as well as Senators Robert Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat, and Orrin Hatch, a Utah Republican.

Pickens said the investment in refueling stations would pay off in decreased dependence on oil from overseas. While a proliferation of natural-gas vehicles would raise the price of the fuel, he said it would still be cheaper than using gasoline or diesel.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • fracking
    Watch the Movie GASLAND its about Fracking and the damage it does
  • contact for T. Boone Pickens
    Can anyone provide a link that will get data to Mr. T. Boone Pickens? I am developing a system that will assist in his efforts to reduce the use of diesel, natural gas, or any type of fuel.
  • Fractoring
    I would like to know more about sending thousands of gallons of water into the earth to recover the natural gas and the dangers it will do to our drinking water.
    m

    Post a comment to this story

    COMMENTS POLICY
    We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
     
    You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
     
    Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
     
    No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
     
    We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
     

    Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

    Sponsored by
    ADVERTISEMENT

    facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

    Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
    Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
     
    Subscribe to IBJ
    1. why oh why does this state continue to elect these people....do you wonder how much was graft out of the 3.8 billion?

    2. i too think this is a great idea. I think the vision and need is there as well. But also agree with Wendy that there may be better location in our city to fulfill this vision and help grow the sports of hockey and figure skating in Indy. Also to help further develop other parts of the city that seem often forgotten. Any of the other 6 townships out side of the three northernmost could benefit greatly from a facility and a vision like this. For a vision that sounds philanthropic, the location is appears more about the money. Would really like to see it elsewhere, but still wish the development the best of luck, as we can always use more ice in the city. As for the Ice growth when they return, if schedules can be coordinated with the Fuel, what could be better than to have high level hockey available to go see every weekend of the season? Good luck with the development and the return of the Ice.

    3. How many parking spaces do they have at Ironworks? Will residents have reserved spaces or will they have to troll for a space among the people that are there at Ruth Chris & Sangiovese?

    4. You do not get speeding ticket first time you speed and this is not first time Mr.Page has speed. One act should not define a man and this one act won't. He got off with a slap on the wrist. I agree with judge no person was injured by his actions. The state was robbed of money by paying too much rent for a building and that money could have been used for social services. The Page family maybe "generous" with their money but for most part all of it is dirty money that he obtained for sources that are not on the upright. Page is the kind of lawyer that gives lawyers a bad name. He paid off this judge like he has many other tine and walked away. Does he still have his license. I believe so. Hire him to get you confiscated drug money back. He will. It will cost you.

    5. I remain amazed at the level of expertise of the average Internet Television Executive. Obviously they have all the answers and know the business inside and out.

    ADVERTISEMENT