Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Pasco Schools Opens Florida’s First District Owned/Operated CNG Station

Land O’ Lakes, FL – (May 17, 2017) – Pasco County Schools and its partners opened Florida’s first school district owned and operated compressed natural gas (CNG) fast-fill station to fuel the 65 CNG buses the district will have by the end of the 17-18 school year.

At the ribbon cutting on Tuesday, Superintendent Kurt Browning, School Board Chairman Allen Altman, Florida Senator Wilton Simpson, County Commission Chairman Mike Moore, and Deputy Superintendent Ray Gadd were joined by project partners Anddrikk Frazier, president and CEO of Integral Energy, and Clearwater Gas Managing Director and Executive Officer Chuck Warrington in celebrating this milestone. Guests were able to watch the first CNG buses being filled with gas and tour the processing plant while the J.W. Mitchel High School jazz band entertained.

Some facts about the filling station:
· There are 10,000 linear feet of electrical conduit underground.
· More than 35,000 LF of wire was used in the project.
· There are more than 50 cubic yards of concrete protecting the underground electrical conduits.
· The steel piping for the CNG was tested to 5,500 pounds per square inch for one hour.
· Each CNG storage vessel weighs more than 6,500 pounds.
· The CNG station is capable of dispensing more than 10,500 gasoline gallons equivalent/day.
· The station will be able to fuel a bus in three minutes.
· All the compression equipment was manufactured in the USA.

Each CNG bus will reduce C02 emissions by nearly 20,000 pounds annually. Compared to the current clean diesel buses, these buses produce:
• 13 percent less greenhouse gas,
• 95 percent less nitrogen oxide, and
• 80 percent less hydrocarbon.

In 2013, the district began purchasing propane-powered buses and liquefied propane gas fueling stations, which now serve east Pasco. The district’s use of propane has yielded the following results:
• 20 percent less nitrogen oxide,
• 60 percent less carbon monoxide, and
• 24 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions.

Advantages to utilizing alternative fuels:
• Reduced vehicle noise
• Cleaner emissions
• Lower contamination risk
• It is an abundant resource
• Less price volatility
• Easier budget management
• Domestically produced
• No CNG transport costs

In addition to the filling station, the district also is opening a new bus compound at the site, 13101 Interlaken Road in Odessa. Student enrollment projections add an average of 1,000 students per year over the next 10 years district-wide, the majority of which will be in the State Road 54 corridor. Just like the filling station, the garage is state-of-the-art and specially designed to service the CNG buses. It is scheduled to be fully operational by July and will accommodate up to 90 buses.

“We are proud of how far we have come in just a few short years,” said School Board Chairman Altman. “We couldn’t have done it without great partnerships and the talented, dedicated staff of our Construction Services, Transportation Services, and Planning departments,” he added.

Both Altman and Superintendent Browning credited Deputy Superintendent Ray Gadd with envisioning the project and seeing it through to completion.

To view/download the video from the ribbon cutting click here: https://youtu.be/7-3YTP9nZss.

Photos are available for media here: https://goo.gl/photos/AAWj4uCQavWA4jZf9. Photo IDs/captions are as follows:

#3 – The J.W. Mitchell High School Jazz Band entertained guests before and after the ribbon cutting.
#4 – Anddrikk Frazier, President and CEO of Integral Energy
#5 – Kurt Browning, Pasco County superintendent of schools
#6 – Ray Gadd, Pasco County Schools deputy superintendent, cuts the ribbon, while Chuck Warrington with Clearwater Gas (L) and State Senator Wilton Simpson look on.
#7 – Emmett Thompson, Transportation Maintenance supervisor, fills a district truck with CNG.
#8 – Ray Gadd checks out the CNG pumps.
#9 – Jason Mendoza, shop manager of the Central Bus Compound
#10 – Superintendent Browning discusses the CNG processing plant operations with business leaders.
#12 – Emmett Thompson fills the CNG truck while William Napolitano, district transportation services manager, looks on.