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WALL, N.J. -- New Jersey Natural Gas received approval from the N.J. Board of Public Utilities to build five to seven natural gas refueling stations during the next year, according to the Asbury Park Press. The Wall, N.J.-based company, a subsidiary of New Jersey Resources that serves approximately 150,000 homes and businesses in Central New Jesey, will spend up to $10 million on the pilot program.
The project will likely cost average residential customers an extra $3.50 annually starting next year and is designed to make it easier for drivers of natural gas vehicles to find a place to fill up.
"We have an opportunity to help grow our economy and protect our environment by encouraging the market for alternative fuel vehicles," stated Laurence M. Downes, chairman and CEO of New Jersey Natural Gas.
Currently, New Jersey only has five natural gas stations, located in Newark, Camden, Glassboro and two in Atlantic City.
"The lack of infrastructure has traditionally been an impediment," said Anne Hellwig, spokeswoman for environmental consulting firm Gladstein, Neandross & Associates. "However, there are so many new projects that are going on right now that the situation is changing very rapidly."
New Jersey Natural Gas stated that it will identify companies in Monmouth, Ocean and Morris counties that use natural gas vehicles, or will use them in the future, to host the refueling stations.