SAN PEDRO, CA – Clean Energy made its case for alternative-fueled trucks to independent owner-operator drayage drivers, with a little help from officials from the San Pedro Bay ports, the South Coast AQMD, and a few trucking companies. Clean Energy supplies natural gas fuel for vehicles and has been a strong advocate of the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach Clean Trucks Program, according to the The Cunningham Report.

During a three-hour informational workshop at the Ports O’ Call restaurant in San Pedro, the benefits of alternative-fueled trucks — specifically liquefied natural gas — were detailed to the 100 or so attendees.

Clean Energy’s Shaunt Hartounian used part of his time during the workshop to clear up what he said were misperceptions about Liquefied Natural Gas. Among those misperceptions is that most LNG is imported from outside the United States, but actually only three percent of LNG is imported from overseas, he said.

LNG costs about $2.75 a gallon currently, making it cheaper by the gallon than standard diesel fuel, which is a reversal of the situation from a few years ago, Hartounian said. And it only takes about 5-6 minutes to fill an LNG-powered fuel tank, the same amount of time as diesel.

Currently, the closest LNG fueling station to the ports is in Carson. However, in 2009, a massive 10- to 12-lane station capable of initially supplying up to 160,000 gallons of LNG fuel a day is slated to open in the heart of the L.A./Long Beach port complex.

Clean Energy also is in discussions with the Port of Long Beach to establish a smaller, six- to seven-lane station with a 50,000-gallon per-day capacity at Pier S in the Port of Long Beach — where the Clean Trucks Center is currently located. That station should open by the end of 2009.