Salient to Investors:

Peter Orszag at Citigroup said well under 0.1 percent of cars and trucks in the U.S. run on natural gas versus seventy-five percent in Armenia. More natural-gas cars and trucks could reduce greenhouse-gas emissions and other pollutants. There are fewer than 2,000 natural-gas filling stations in the U.S. versus 120,000 that offer gasoline.


Professor Christopher Knittel at MIT said switching to natural-gas vehicles would reduce our vulnerability to oil-price shocks, a potential benefit amounting to $850 for each sedan to $18,500 for each heavy-duty truck converted.

Fred Krupp of the Environmental Defense Fund warns that methane leakage from gas production may be large enough that its net impact on the climate is negative for many years. Methane dissipates faster than carbon dioxide.

The National Academy of Sciences said that vehicles that run on natural gas are not a viable mitigation strategy for climate change, estimating that converting from gasoline to natural-gas vehicles would harm the climate for at least 80 years, and switching from heavy-duty diesel vehicles would exacerbate greenhouse-gas effects for 300 years. Methane leakage would have to be reduced to 1 percent to 1.6 percent to make natural-gas conversions beneficial for the climate over the next few decades, much less than current leakage are estimated.

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