Seal Beach, CA-based Clean Energy Fuels Corp. has signed a contract with a major Indiana-based milk producer to build and operate a compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling station for 42 delivery trucks serving portions of Indiana, Tennessee and Kentucky. Fair Oaks Dairy's unit, Renewable Dairy Fuels, worked out the deal with Clean Energy to establish and run the facility for dispensing CNG for milk-hauling trucks the dairy plans to use; the facility will also have public access. The CNG-powered trucks are scheduled to replace diesel-powered models now being used. The facility, which is scheduled to open in northern Indiana this fall, will have public access; a second facility is planned in southern Indiana. Renewable Dairy Fuels has indicated that it plans to produce biomethane from dairy cattle waste and pipe the biogas directly to the Fair Oaks station for onsite conversion to CNG vehicle fuel by Clean Energy.
Officials in Garfield County, CO, said that $3.9 million needs to be refunded to oil and gas operators in the county that were incorrectly assessed taxes against materials used in the hydraulic fracturing (fracking) process during a four-year period (2002-05). Across the state other counties with heavy drilling and production could have a similar situation, but a Colorado Department of Revenue spokesperson told NGI that it is not known how many counties or companies may be involved. Overcollections were discovered in 2008 by oil/gas industry accounting firms that were adopting new procedures for handling sales tax collections in the state as drilling activity began to accelerate. With that discovery, Noble Energy Inc. filed a lawsuit against the state to retrieve the overpaid amounts. The Colorado Court of Appeals in April ruled in favor of Noble and other companies that had filed lawsuits. The court determined that the taxes were improper since, in part, they were levied against the sand, liquids and chemicals used in the fracking process even though those materials were never purchased by the oil/gas companies. Therefore, the fracking materials could not be considered "tangible personal property." The refunding process is just beginning and will unfold at the county level, the revenue department spokesperson said.
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