America has enough natural gas to last for hundreds of years. It’s plentiful, relatively inexpensive, and burns far more cleanly than coal and petroleum. Until now, compressed natural gas (CNG) has not been popular as a transportation fuel, other than for specific applications such as urban buses and garbage trucks. With all the hubbub about electric cars, most folks have never heard about CNG-powered vehicles.

That’s about to change. There’s a new push to replace conventionally fueled vehicles with CNG-power.

While the Honda Civic GX NGV is the only factory-built CNG-powered passenger car available in America today, CNG-conversions are becoming more and more popular. Government-funded conversion rebates lower the overall cost dramatically, allowing for rapid return on investment.

This year’s Alternative Fuels and Vehicles conference was a hotbed of CNG activity, with a host of CNG converted vehicles including taxicabs and pickup trucks. There was even a wicked cool 33 hot rod running on CNG and a CNG-converted Hummer rescue vehicle.

Is there a CNG-powered car in your future?