Going “green” no longer just applies to making buildings more energy efficient. Government subdivisions at all levels have seen how much they can save through energy efficiencies, and not they are looking at “green” fleets. It has become an increasingly growing marketplace for those companies with fleet solutions.
Many government entities are facing the mandatory use of alternative fuels and green technology. In fact, by 2015, the federal government will require fleet managers to operate with 100 percent alternative fuel, hybrid or electric vehicles. That has made “green” fleets a growing trend, and one that is only going to continue at all levels of government. The results will be both good for cost savings for government and good for the environment.
Here are some examples of how governments are moving toward the use of green fleets:
Colorado and Oklahoma came together recently to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at increasing the number of clean-energy vehicles in their states’ fleets.
Since then, six more states, including Wyoming, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Utah, New Mexico and Maine, have signed the MOU as well. These states will work together to draft a request for proposals to aggregate the statewide purchasing of alternative energy fleet vehicles.
In an effort to support the development of natural gas fleets, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) offered up to $4.5 million in grants for government entities, businesses and individuals offering solutions for alternative fuel stations and services across the state.
A number of state energy efficiency projects through the Clean Tennessee Energy Grant Program are designed to both increase cost savings and decrease emissions. Private firms are encouraged to get involved with the program.
The Clean Tennessee Energy Grant Program offered financial assistance to government agencies (state and local) and utility districts to purchase, install and construct fleet projects that improve fuel efficiency.
The city of Tulsa announced it would spend $875,000 on compressed natural gas (CNG) fleet upgrades. Funding for this initiative was from both federal energy program grants and funds from the Tulsa Authority for the Recovery of Energy.
Tulsa also announced it would construct six dedicated CNG fueling points for refuse collection trucks to build an open-to-the-public retail CNG fueling station by the end of 2012.
An Alternative Fuel Vehicle Conversion Fund was created at the end of 2011 to implement a plan to convert the state’s fleet to alternative fuel vehicles. Virginia is developing a plan to convert its fleet vehicles via its Public-Private Education Facilities and Infrastructure Act (PPEA) process. The fund will receive federal funds to use for reducing congestion and improving air quality.
The needs and the mandates in this area create a huge marketplace for companies offering vehicle services, alternative fuels and/or green technologies.