US DOE Reports CNG Price Varies Little Over 16 Years

The United States Department of Energy (DOE) reported in January 2017 that based on data from selected dates between 2000 and 2016, two fuels stand out for their low price variability – Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and electricity.

The DOE states: “Retail prices for most transportation fuels have been highly volatile over the past 16 years. The prices are displayed in gasoline-gallon equivalents (GGE) which equate the energy content of any motor fuel to that of a gallon of gasoline. The prices are collected in gallons (except for CNG and electricity) and are converted to GGE. In this figure, the prices were also adjusted for inflation to 2016 dollars.”

US DOE Fuels Price comparison 2000-2016 (chart)

(Adapted from US DOE Data)

“Since 2000, gasoline, diesel, propane, ethanol (E85), and biodiesel (B20) have all experienced significant fluctuations. Electricity prices show cyclical price variations from the summer months to the winter months. Over the 16-year period, electricity ranged from a low of $3.47 per GGE to a high of $4.51 per GGE, a $1.04 difference. In contrast, gasoline prices ranged from a low of $1.46 per GGE to a high of $4.36 per GGE, a $2.90 difference. Although CNG experienced larger price fluctuations between 2005 and 2009, the price was generally more stable from 2009-on.”

Trendlines (linear) added by NGV Global suggest that despite the recent closing of pricing between CNG and most other fuels, the long term trend is for the gap to widen, highlighting two of the major benefits of natural gas fuel: low price and stability.

Information Source: US DOE