T. Boone Pickens explains why America should embrace natural gas to end our dependence on foreign fuel.
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TAS: The question would be, that if, as you’re saying, that the economics make so much sense in terms of how much cheaper it would be to fuel on natural gas than with diesel, then why wouldn’t trucking companies themselves want to convert to natural gas to save the fuel costs?
BP: You’re saying, let the free market work.
TAS: Well, the basic question is that if oil prices get to the point where it’s no longer economically feasible for companies to use oil-based fuel to fuel their vehicles, then wouldn’t the free market naturally convert everything to natural gas over time, if that’s the economically more efficient product?
BP: Well, it’s going to take a long time to do it for one thing, and you need the leadership to take you in the direction that is best. And this is clearly better. You’re dealing with a domestic fuel that’s 30 percent cleaner and cheaper in preference over a foreign oil that is dirtier and more expensive.
TAS: But if it’s so much cheaper, what would be preventing, right now, a trucking company from wanting to convert over time its fleet to vehicles that are able to take natural gas? Why would they need a government tax credit to do it?
BP: Well, because it’s $65,000 difference in the truck. So, until you get up to scale on the natural gas engine, it’s more expensive to buy the natural gas engine. So you’ve got to get some help to get it started. But you’re spending $1 billion a day on foreign oil. So you start turning some of that around, the money’s here. The money is creating jobs, profits are made, taxes are paid, and the economy is helped by it. And right now, you’re just pouring money out of the country.
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H/T to National Review Online