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Tallahassee - The Florida Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition (FNGVC) announced today that the state’s recently created natural gas vehicle incentive program produced 1,820 jobs and $68 million in wages in the state. Economist Hank Fishkind of Fishkind & Associates supplied the figures for this follow-up analysis of a 2012 report his firm conducted for the coalition. FNGVC Chairman, Eric Criss, welcomed the report: “This is a great example of the public and private sectors working together for the greater good. We’re creating jobs and reducing air emissions.”
Senator Wilton Simpson commented on the positive report: “This economic report shows how successful Florida’s Natural Fuel Gas Vehicle Rebate program has been. This fuel provides significant budget savings to governmental entities, the business world, and our citizens. Natural gas has been a game changer for Florida and the United States, not only for motor vehicles but for the energy sector, commercial businesses, and the manufacturing industry. I’m proud to have sponsored this legislation in the Florida Senate.”
Prior to the legislation, there were 18 Compressed Natural Gas (“CNG”) stations in Florida. There are now 61 active CNG fueling stations with an additional 29 planned. This is a 238% increase in CNG fueling stations over two years. The report notes that a CNG station costs on average $1.5 million; meaning investment in CNG station infrastructure has been $91.5 million over the past two years. Since January 1, 2014, the State of Florida has spent $4.7 million in rebates issued under the Natural Gas Fuel Fleet Vehicle Rebate program. Using the RIMS II multipliers established by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, the state’s $4.7 million investment has generated a total economic output of $204.5 million, 1,820 jobs, and $68.0 million in earnings—an outstanding return on investment.
State Representative Lake Ray, who has taken up the issue of Florida’s energy and ports in the State House urged the adoption of natural gas vehicle incentives: “It is exciting to see the Florida Natural Fuel Gas Vehicle Rebate program working so well. The fleets in my legislative district, Jacksonville, and its surrounding area have begun the transition to the clean burning American natural gas. We have Champion Brands a beer distributor, UPS, Raven Trucking, taxis, a seafood wholesaler, local government, and the Jacksonville Transit Authority making the move.”
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Today, a group of 15 companies and trade associations formally announced the creation of The Florida Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition (FNGVC). This group of founding members includes utilities such as TECO/Peoples Gas, natural gas marketers such as Florida Natural Gas, and operators of commercial fleets such as Champion Brands and JJ Taylor Companies. FNGVC is urging the State of Florida to implement an incentive program similar to those in Texas and nearly a dozen other states. Such programs offer grants, tax credits and other incentives for the purchase of vehicles and construction of fueling stations.
FNGVC chairman, Eric Criss, said of the study, “This is big news for job seekers in Florida. Our most conservative calculations show an incentive program could produce hundreds of millions of dollars in new wages, with taxpayers reimbursed one hundred percent.” He continued, “We have reached the tipping point for compressed natural gas vehicles – this is the real deal. The technology is already in use across the nation and around the world.”
State Representative Lake Ray, a leader on such issues, believes that NGV’s will be considered in the 2013 legislative session in Tallahassee. Ray stated: “It is vital to Florida’s economic future that we have a conversation about transportation, freight mobility and logistics in the next legislative session. I believe that natural gas vehicles will be an important component of that discussion.”
David Rogers, Executive Director of the Florida Natural Gas Association, expressed the gas industry’s support: “We support the coalition’s goal of increasing the use of this clean, efficient and domestic fuel in Florida. Purchasing new fleet vehicles to run on American produced natural gas is a proven way to save public and private sector transportation funds while creating new jobs.”
Coalition Chair Criss explained why businesses are turning to NGVs: “We have reached the tipping point for NGVs – the technology is already in use across the nation and around the world. Moreover, businesses are desperate to cut their fuel costs. AAA reported the largest July increase for the national average retail gas price in more than a dozen years. Prices rose 36 of 39 days.” [AAA Fuel Gauge Report through August 10, 2012]
Please click on the links below to see the Full Study and Executive Summary.
March 9, 2012
Tallahassee, FL - Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam issued a statement today following the Florida Legislature’s passage of Florida’s energy bill. The bill will now head to the Governor’s desk.
The Florida House of Representatives cast its final vote today in support of advancing Florida’s energy future.
Florida’s energy bill, which will increase diversity in the state’s energy portfolio, expand energy production and create much-needed jobs for Floridians, is now headed to the Governor’s desk for signature.
With overwhelming support in both chambers, the Legislature is sending a clear message that Florida is focused on its future. We’re putting Florida’s energy policy back on the right track, positioning Florida to secure a stable, reliable and diverse supply of energy.
Thanks to Chairman Scott Plakon and Chairman Seth McKeel for their extraordinary leadership in this effort.
Please join our team! The Florida Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition is a project of the non-profit, 501(c)4 Florida Business Consumer Alliance. Our members include end-users of commercial natural gas vehicles such as beer distributors, freight delivery companies, vehicle manufactures, and large-format retailers, as well as companies up and down the natural gas supply chain.