July 16, 2024

Neomi Masuyama

Sustainable Automotive

Vehicle Infrastructure and Fleets: Alternative Fuel


Alternative fuel vehicles are gaining popularity, but there isn’t much infrastructure in place to support them. Here’s a breakdown of the different types of vehicles and what they can do for your business.

Alternative Fuel Vehicles

There are many different types of alternative fuel vehicles available. All are not created equal, and some are better than others for certain applications.

  • Compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles can be fueled at almost any CNG fueling station in the U.S., which is growing rapidly as new stations open each year.
  • Diesel-electric hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) use a battery pack and an electric motor to power your vehicle with electricity generated by a small diesel engine that charges the batteries when needed or assists in accelerating your car when you step on the accelerator pedal.* Biodiesel blends ranging from B5 through B20 are commonly used as fuel in diesel engine cars, trucks, buses and boats.* Hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) combine hydrogen stored onboard with oxygen from air to produce electricity which powers electric motors that drive your car forward–no combustion takes place inside those tanks!

Electric Vehicles

Electric vehicles are powered by a battery, which can be recharged from the grid or from solar panels. Electric vehicles are more efficient than traditional gas-powered cars because they generate no tailpipe emissions. They also have lower operating costs and produce less noise pollution. In addition to these benefits, electric cars are cleaner than conventional vehicles because they do not use fossil fuels like gasoline or diesel fuel to run their engines (though some electricity sources may contribute more carbon dioxide per unit of energy than others). However, there are still some environmental concerns related to battery production: most batteries today use lithium-ion cells made with cobalt mined in Congo or Australia; mining these minerals can cause severe damage to local ecosystems and communities if done incorrectly

Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles

Hydrogen fuel cells are a type of battery. The hydrogen is mixed with oxygen in the fuel cell to create electricity, which is used to power the car. The only byproduct is water (H2O), so it’s considered very environmentally friendly compared to other types of alternative fuels and vehicles.

Fuel cell vehicles are more efficient than battery-powered electric cars because they don’t have to convert electricity into mechanical energy before applying it to propulsion–they do this directly through chemical processes involving hydrogen and oxygen gases that produce only water vapor as waste products. However, they aren’t as efficient as gasoline-powered vehicles; this means they require larger tanks filled with liquid or compressed gaseous hydrogen instead of just pumping gas into your tank like you would at any standard gas station

Natural Gas Vehicles

Natural gas vehicles are a good alternative to traditional gasoline or diesel vehicles. Natural gas vehicles are cheaper to drive than traditional gasoline or diesel vehicles, cleaner than traditional gasoline or diesel vehicles, and more fuel efficient than traditional gasoline or diesel vehicles.

Natural gas is a clean-burning alternative fuel that can be used in place of traditional fuels such as gasoline and diesel for both on-road transportation (e.g., cars) and off-road equipment (e.g., trucks).

Propane Autogas (LPG) Vehicles

Propane autogas (LPG) is a mixture of propane and butane. It’s used as a fuel in many countries, especially in Europe where it’s popular for its efficient performance and cost savings over gasoline.

In the United States, however, LPG vehicles are not as common because they’re more expensive than traditional gasoline-powered cars. The only manufacturer currently selling such vehicles is Honda–and even then only in California.

There are a lot of new alternative fuel vehicles, but the infrastructure is still lagging behind.

There are a lot of new alternative fuel vehicles, but the infrastructure is still lagging behind.

The most common infrastructure for vehicles is gasoline stations. These are easy to build and maintain, but they only work with some types of cars and trucks–and even then, not all models can use them. For example, you can’t fill up your electric car at a gas station because it doesn’t have an internal combustion engine (ICE). This means that you need separate charging stations for EVs or plug-in hybrid electrics (PHEVs) if you want them to be able to drive long distances without stopping for hours at a time.

Other types of infrastructure include hydrogen fueling stations (HFS), battery swapping stations (BSS), and compressed natural gas (CNG) pumps–but these aren’t always compatible with each other either! For example: HFSs don’t work with CNG tanks or BSRS; BSSs won’t accept fuel from any other source besides batteries inside EVs/PHEVs; etc…


The future of alternative fuel vehicles is still unclear. On one hand, there are a lot of new options available and more coming soon, but on the other hand there is not enough infrastructure to support these vehicles in many places. The good news is that there are some states working hard towards building more charging stations for electric cars and trucks so they can run cleanly without polluting our air or damaging it’s climate.