BLOOMBERG: SWITCHING TO NATURAL GAS VEHICLES COULD MAKE US BETTER-OFF
- In a recent analysis, Bloomberg Businessweekly has proposed the United States to consider the possibility of converting to natural-gas cars, and brings Armenia's example in that connection, noting that most vehicles in the country are run on natural gas.
"Armenia is not generally known as a world leader, but it holds at least one record: Seventy-five percent of its cars and trucks run on natural gas.
In the US, in contrast, the share is well under 0.1 percent - even though natural-gas prices have plummeted here over the past few years. Given the problems associated with US dependence on oil, more use of natural gas for transportation could carry big benefits.
One of the most important of these would be macroeconomic. Switching to natural-gas vehicles would reduce our vulnerability to oil-price shocks," says the magazine.
Speaking of the possible changes, the author of the article, Peter Orszag, refers to a New York Time report which pointed out to the filling-stations as a primary target in such efforts. "There are fewer than 2,000 natural-gas stations across the country - a fraction of the 120,000 that offer gasoline. This makes people and companies reluctant to shift to the new vehicles," he notes.
To facilitate the reform, he proposes providing an 80 percent tax credit, up to a maximum of $250,000, for additions to existing stations and $2 million for new stand-alone facilities, for the first 20,000 natural-gas stations built over the next three years. He then addresses the environmental benefits of the proposed plan noting that vehicles run on natural gas would emit 25 percent less greenhouse gases than petroleum vehicles
"With a bold incentive for more natural-gas filling stations, we could put more people to work today and might one day even catch up to Armenia on natural-gas vehicles. And with more effort to plug methane leaks, we could be confident about helping the climate along the way," he adds.
- 1752 Battle between the Georgian King Heraklitus the Second and Azad khan's forces near Kanaker (Armenia).
- 1904 Death of Karapet Utujian, the founder of "Massiss" weekly. He was born on 1832 10 24.
- 1993 The Artsakh forces liberate Martakert after the Azeri Turks had occupied it for a year.