IGS Energy-CNG Services will have an exhibit at the conference to update attendees about the I-79 filling stations projects.
There are more than 1,200 natural gas filling stations around the country, but only about half of them are public, according to the Department of Energy.
"I think as additional infrastructure comes on, you'll see the state take a more serious look at natural gas vehicles and grow their fleet of natural gas vehicles," Meadows said. "Businesses will adopt it first, then consumers will get very excited. Now that we know the Marcellus is here, West Virginia is on the forefront of the market."
Meadows said using natural gas as a transportation fuel "makes a huge amount of sense."
Federal and state governments made a push for natural gas-powered vehicles in the 1990s, but the idea petered out when gasoline prices dropped to a point where there was no longer a big advantage in switching to natural gas.
But Bragg said technology has improved since then, and natural gas prices should continue to stay low.
At $2.10 per gallon, natural gas is cheaper than gasoline's $3.50 per gallon national average last week, according to the Department of Energy.
The price of natural gas has been steadily declining in recent years, but it has also been "extremely volatile," said Byron Harris, director of the state Public Service Commission's Consumer Advocate Division.
Harris said he is concerned about the state repeating the mistake it made in the '90s.
"You had natural gas utilities subsidizing the infrastructure necessary to serve these facilities that ended up being abandoned," Harris said. "They built these facilities out and were able to charge customers for the cost of facilities that ... had minimal revenue streams on them.
"Customers paid to build pipelines and compressors that the company never earned much money on."
Harris said he thinks natural gas should be used as a fuel alternative, but using CNG in fleet vehicles "seems to work best."
Natural gas powers about 112,000 vehicles in the U.S. and 14.8 million vehicles worldwide, according to the Department of Energy.
Large companies, like Waste Management, have already converted their fleet trucks to natural gas.
Waste Management, the nation's largest recycler, has more than 1,000 natural gas-powered trucks, which is the largest in the industry, according to its website.
Chesapeake Energy has converted 2,000 of its 5,000 vehicles to the alternate fuel source.
"A big part of that is the trucks come back to the same place so you don't need infrastructure of gas stations like you do for gasoline," Harris said.
Meadows said fleets have very high fuel costs because they drive such a high amount of miles each year. When they hear they can save up to 50 percent by using natural gas-powered vehicles instead of diesel, that's when the change starts to happen, Meadows said.
"West Virginia has really become a leader since the development of Marcellus in natural gas," Meadows said. "We step into this next stage of natural gas as a transportation fuel. Hosting this event to see a West Virginia resource is a big win for the state."
The general public is invited to participate in the 2013 Appalachian Basin NGV Expo and Conference's "Ride and Drive" Wednesday, May 15 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. to experience a natural gas-powered light-duty truck. Landau Eugene Murphy will attend the reception Monday. For more information about the conference or to register, visit www.ngv-expo.com or call Rebekah Hogue, of the West Virginia Oil and Natural Gas Association, at 304-343-1609 or email expoi...@ngv-expo.com.
Reach Megan Workman at megan.work...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5113.