RALEIGH — One day, you may be pulling your car up to the pump and fill it up with liquid natural gas, or you could bring your groceries home in a hybrid gasoline-electric sedan. TheTriangle Clean Cities Coalitionis pushing alternative fuel vehicles.
Cars, trucks, even land yachts can be powered without gasoline. The Clean Cities Program is sponsored by theU.S. Department of Energyto reduce dependence on imported oil and clean up emissions.
Alternative fuels such as propane, compressed natural gas, ethanol, electricity and fuel cells can now be found in all types of vehicles, including the two-wheeled variety.
The new flex-fuel Ford Taurus can run on gasoline or ethanol. Hybrid, gas-electric cars from Honda and Toyota are on the market.
"How do we create a situation where the fuel is available so the people with those vehicles would be interested and inclined to put the ethanol in them," says Thomas Gross of the U.S. Department of Energy.
Oil companies are now called energy companies, and they are getting on the alternative fuel bandwagon.
"We'll see an increase in refueling sites for natural gas, but particularly, there's a focus in this region on ethanol which we think is pretty exciting. We're going to see some increases in refueling sites there," says Ellen Reckhow of the Triangle J. Council of Government.
The Triangle is the first region in North Carolina and the 80th in the country to become part of the Clean Cities Program.