HOUSTON, April 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Apache Corporation (NYSE, Nasdaq: APA) executives and local dignitaries gathered in Tulsa to celebrate the grand opening of the company's first public-access compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling station.
The canopied, multi-pump station is the first of several public-access CNG stations Apache is expected to complete this year, including Apache-branded CNG stations in Houston, Midland, Texas; and Lafayette, La.
"The state of Oklahoma has been and continues to be a leader in encouraging greater use of clean-burning natural gas, which this country has been blessed with in incredible abundance," said G. Steven Farris, Apache's chairman and chief executive officer. "Oklahoma is considered the nation's leader when it comes to helping encourage vehicle conversion to CNG and supporting the establishment of a CNG fueling station infrastructure. We thank Oklahoma for its continued support."
Local dignitaries participating in the ribbon-cutting ceremony and CNG fueling demonstration included Tulsa Mayor Dewey Bartlett.
"Apache is not only a community leader, but an extremely close community partner to the City of Tulsa," Bartlett said. "This CNG fueling station is key to the CNG infrastructure of this city and Apache again establishes how public-private collaboration is the essence of Tulsa's success in this growing industry."
The station is located at 5011 S. Vandalia Ave., a site that was chosen to maximize customer convenience and one that is in close proximity to Apache's Tulsa office to help with fleet refueling and to support employees who want to take advantage of company incentives that help them pay to convert their personal vehicles to natural gas.
"This centrally located Apache-branded CNG fueling station was produced using world-class equipment from leading manufacturers and as a result it is extremely efficient and safe," said Rob Johnston, Apache Central Region Vice President.
The station boasts three dual-hose fueling dispensers capable of fueling six cars simultaneously at a rate of three-to-four gallons equivalent per minute. The self-service station accepts a broad range of credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express, as well as standard fleet cards such as Wright Express, Voyager and Fuel Man.
The station is unattended but customers will have access anytime to someone at Apache with knowledge and expertise on CNG refueling simply by calling a toll-free number posted on the fueling pumps. "If they have any trouble fueling, problems with their credit card, or have any questions or concerns, they'll be able to reach a live person 24 hours a day, seven days a week," said Frank Chapel, Apache's director of natural gas transportation fuels.
Apache currently has 250 vehicles that have been converted to run on CNG with plans to have a total of 350 of its fleet converted by year's end. By 2015, the company expects to have 80 percent of its 1,000-plus fleet converted to CNG.
All full-time Apache employees who purchase a new dedicated CNG vehicle or convert their vehicle to CNG receive a $5,000 Visa credit card.
Also at the event, Apache donated a $5,000 Visa credit card to the Metropolitan Tulsa Transit Authority to be used to help pay fueling costs for two CNG-powered paratransit vans the company donated in December 2011. Tulsa Transit is using the new wheelchair-accessible vans as part of its door-to-door Lift Program for disabled individuals.
There are currently more than 115,000 to 120,000 natural gas vehicles on America's roads today and more than 13 million worldwide, according to Natural Gas Vehicles for America. Industry data shows that vehicular natural gas nearly doubled between 2003 and 2009. In 2010, natural gas displaced more than 350 million gasoline gallon equivalents each year. The International Association for Natural Gas Vehicles estimates that there will be more than 50 million natural gas vehicles worldwide within the next 10 years, or about 9 percent of the world transportation fleets.
Apache Corporation is an independent oil and gas exploration and production company with operations in the United States, Canada, Egypt, the United Kingdom North Sea, Australia and Argentina. Apache posts announcements, updates and investor information, in addition to copies of all recent press
releases, on its website, http://www.apachecorp.com.
SOURCE Apache Corporation