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MANSFIELD, La. -- Louisiana opened a new publicly accessible compressed natural gas (CNG) station on Feb. 6 at Mansfield's Shop-a-Lott convenience store and truck stop, reported the Shreveport Times. Public officials and fuel industry attended the ceremonial opening of the Chevron-branded station.
Fuel company Chesapeake Energy Corp. partnered with an "Empower Louisiana" grant from the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources to pay for the station's compressor equipment and dispensers.
"As gasoline prices continue to rise, the economic benefits of CNG will become even more pronounced," said Paul Pratt, director of corporate development for Chesapeake Energy. "Today, CNG is $1.79 -- a price level we haven't seen in America for many years."
Other CNG stations opened previously in Red River and Bossier parishes, but they initially opened for private use, according to the newspaper.
"As a company, we see the new CNG fueling station in Mansfield as meeting the growing demand, especially from CNG fleet operators in this area," said Buddy Lott, president of Lott Oil Co., who was praised for being Louisiana's first private investor to add CNG. "We are optimistic more companies will convert their fleets in the future and consumers will gravitate to CNG-powered vehicles as manufacturers produce more CNG models."
More public CNG stations are likely to open in the area during 2012, according to the report.