Pain at the pump: Is natural gas the answer?

    Motorists can thank “the rising cost of crude and refining troubles” for the high prices when they fill-up, reports WDEL.com. And with Hurricane Isaac bearing down on the Gulf and one last holiday weekend left in store for travelers, prices at the pump may get even higher.

    AAA Mid Atlantic offers a Fuel Price Finder that lists gas prices at over one thousand stations nationwide. Users can search by state and zip code to find the best prices in the area.

    The online tool can save motorists a few bucks per fill-up. But what if drivers could save a couple bucks a gallon?

    Out in Lower Bucks County, Southeastern Pennsylvania’s “first public accessed compressed natural gas station” will open next month.

    According to PhillyBurbs.com, “There are about 120,000 natural gas-powered vehicle in the U.S. today, and about 1,000 fueling stations — about half of which are public.”

    But because compressed natural gas sells for $1 to $2 less per gallon than traditional gasoline or diesel fuel, the belief is that the demand will rise.

    Bill Rickett, the executive director of the Bucks County Transportation Management Authority looks at it like this:

    “It’s a ‘chicken or the egg’ type thing,” he said. “Do you need the vehicles before you have the fueling stations, so you have the fleet numbers you need to make the station viable? Or do you build the station first, and the vehicles follow?”

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