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City Buys Natural-Gas Garbage Trucks to Save Money

20 new garbage trucks will take on Spokane’s routes this month, running on a new, and cheaper, fuel. The city is slowly transitioning its garbage fleet from diesel to natural gas.

Utilities spokesperson Marlene Feist says if you’re the type who remembers to take the garbage out when you hear the truck, listen more closely now. The CNG, compressed natural gas, trucks are quieter. Mayor David Condon touted the new vehicles at a news conference.

Condon: “These trucks are cheaper to operate, they produce cleaner emissions, run quieter, and perform better in cold weather. These will reduce our greenhouse emissions for the trucks by at least 20%.”

The city estimates a yearly savings of $1 million dollars once the whole fleet runs on natural gas. That’s about 70 vehicles.

It makes the city of Spokane a steady customer for the natural gas, and therefore fracking, industry. All CNG will be purchased from Avista Utilities, priced by the gallon from 87 cents to a dollar-ten less expensive than diesel.

The city has been planning to buy CNG trucks for about two years. The trucks will be rolled out in time for the grand opening of a CNG fueling center later this month in Spokane.

Copyright 2015 Spokane Public Radio

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