Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore (National Lakeshore) recently celebrated the successful implementation of a Clean Cities National Parks Initiative project, unveiling a fleet of new electric and propane vehicles. All six vehicles are helping the park to continue its “greening” efforts. The accomplishments were celebrated with a ribbon cutting ceremony, attended by Clean Energy Coalition.
With funding from the U.S. Department of Energy and technical assistance from Clean Energy Coalition, the National Lakeshore implemented a range of measures to reduce the environmental impact of its fleet. Specifically, the National Lakeshore was able to:
As a result of the initiative, the park was able to reduce its fleet vehicle emissions by nearly 20 percent and promote the benefits of alternative fuels and fuel-efficient driving habits with its more than 1.3 million annual visitors.
The ribbon-cutting event included remarks from National Lakeshore staff, Clean Energy Coalition staff, and elected officials. Event guests had the opportunity to view the new vehicles and charging station in the visitor center parking lot.
This change comes after several years of working with Clean Energy Coalition to help the park reduce its carbon footprint. The park hopes the move will inspire visitors to do their part to reduce their emissions both at the park and at home.
For more information on this Clean Cities initiative, contact:
Ann Arbor Area Clean Cities Coordinator
734-585-5720 ext. 25
Question of the Month: What are the new credit allocations that were established under the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE)’s Alternative Fuel Transportation Program (Program) earlier this year? How can I help spread the word on these new Energy Policy Act (EPAct) compliance pathways?
Answer: DOE issued a final rule on March 21, 2014, that establishes credit levels for additional means by which covered state and alternative fuel provider fleets operating under the Program’s Standard Compliance option may earn credits. These credits may be used toward compliance with a fleet’s alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) acquisition requirements. DOE promulgated the rule pursuant Congress’ direction, set forth in Section 133 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.
The new credit allocations address the acquisition of various types of electric drive vehicles and allow covered fleets to earn credits under Standard Compliance for some vehicles that do not meet the EPAct 1992 definition of an AFV. Newly eligible vehicles include the following (with their credit allocations):
Medium- and heavy-duty HEVs are also eligible for one-half credit after a fleet has met its light-duty AFV acquisition requirements.
Acquiring the electric drive vehicles noted above is not the only new way to earn credits under EPAct Standard Compliance. Fleets may now earn credits for investments of their own funds (not grant funds or other monetary awards) in qualified alternative fuel infrastructure. For every $25,000 invested, a covered fleet may earn one credit, with a limit of five credits available per fleet per model year for private infrastructure investment, and ten credits per fleet per model year for public infrastructure investment.
Fleets may also earn credits for investments in alternative fuel non-road equipment and/or emerging technologies associated with the Section 133-identified vehicles. The credits for non-road equipment are similar to infrastructure – one credit for every $25,000 invested and a maximum of five credits may be earned per fleet per model year. Emerging technologies investments will earn a covered fleet two credits for the initial investment of $50,000 and one credit for every $25,000 invested thereafter, with a limit of five credits per fleet per model year.
Fleets may begin taking advantage of these new credit allocations for their efforts undertaken in model year 2014 and future model years.
How Can You Spread the Word?
Are you aware of any covered utility or state fleets that are building new fueling infrastructure?
Do you have an EPAct covered fleet stakeholder that needs an extra push to buy or lease HEVs?
Do you or your stakeholders have questions regarding EPAct compliance?
Note that covered fleets are currently compiling their Program reports for model year 2014 (September 1, 2013 to August 31, 2014) activities, which are due by December 31, 2014.
For more information, refer to the following resources:
For more information on how this may impact your fleet or community, contact:
Business Development Director