UPS intends to spend $50 million to build nine additional liquefied natural gas fueling stations in Ohio and seven other states.
The Ohio facilities will be in Columbus and Toledo.
The recent announcement will bring the total number of LNG stations operated by UPS to 18.
Four were announced last April, and the 13 new stations should be operational by the end of 2014, the Atlanta-based company said.
The LNG fueling infrastructure will support the operation of approximately 1,000 UPS LNG-fueled tractors that will displace more than 24 million gallons of diesel fuel annually, UPS said.
UPS has used LNG vehicles for more than a decade and has benefitted from lower fuel prices because of the shale boom in the United States compared with imported petroleum.
“The natural gas industry needs companies to commit to using natural gas to help establish a reliable alternative to traditional fuel, and that is just what UPS is doing,” said David Abney, UPS chief operating officer, in a statement. “The UPS strategy is both environmentally friendly and economically viable. LNG is becoming more readily available, plus it’s more insulated from market volatilities than diesel fuel.”
The expansion will include new fueling stations in Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Pennsylvania and Texas.
Construction is already underway on three facilities in Tennessee and one in Texas.
The company already operates five LNG stations in California, Nevada and Utah.
UPS began using LNG tractors in its delivery fleet in 2002.
Abney said the company’s goal is to reach 1 billion miles by 2017 by its alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles.
UPS operates more than 2,700 alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles.
It also currently operates approximately 1,000 compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles and will begin a pilot program testing CNG tractors in early 2014 as it continues to look toward natural gas as a substitute for conventional fuel.
Bob Downing can be reached at 330-996-3745 or firstname.lastname@example.org.