WASHINGTON– At a recent press conference in Chicago, Rep. Rahm Emanuel announced plans to introduce legislation that will compel automakers to make 10 percent of their fleet vehicles run on natural gas by the year 2018. Emanuel's proposal also includes incentives and tax credits that will result in the addition of natural gas pumps at 20,000 fueling stations across the country. The legislation has not yet been formally introduced.
"American drivers should be able to buy a car that runs on a cleaner fuel that is currently half the cost of gas," Emanuel said. "Developing cars that run on natural gas and making it available at the gas station or at home will save money for consumers and help end our dependence on foreign oil."
Emanuel's legislation would also offer new incentives to make natural gas more readily available for drivers and could enable the construction of natural gas pumps at 20,000 gas stations across the country. The legislation:
- Offers a $90,000 tax credit to encourage gas station owners to install natural gas fuel pumps.
- Provides $2.6 billion in bonding authority to states to provide no- or low-interest loans to service stations to install natural gas pumps.
- Requires gas stations owned by the major oil companies to install at least one natural gas pump in each station by 2018.
- Includes tax credits for drivers who convert their cars to allow them to run on natural gas, and for those Americans who own home "Phill" units, a device that can be installed in a garage that allows drivers to use their home natural gas line to refuel their car.