This Ann Arbor Clean Cities webinar will focus on driver training for fleets. Speakers will discuss the benefits of driver training, technologies for implementing driver training, and their experience using driver training technologies and techniques. Presenters: Laura Palombi (Clean Energy Coalition) and Paul Okunewitch (GreenRoad)
Program Contact Information
Ann Arbor Clean Cities Coordinator
ROUSH CleanTech recently hired Rob Stevens, from Ford Motor Company, as the new vice president of strategy to spearhead future product and customer endeavors. Stevens brings 37 years of engineering and fleet customer knowledge to ROUSH CleanTech.
As an engineer at Ford, Stevens directed strategic planning and product development for commercial vehicles. Not only an engineer, Stevens proved his leadership and commitment to alternative fuels as the president and chief operating officer of Ford’s TH!NK Mobility LLC. In this position, he helped launch three alternative fuel product lines and later reintroduced alternative fuel engines in Ford commercial trucks.
“I’ve spent years collaborating with customers to find the right vehicle for the right application. In the alternative fuels space, ROUSH CleanTech offers an ideal scenario of product, customer and brand integrity,” said Stevens. “I plan to use my 37 years of engineering and fleet customer knowledge to bring about a greater change in clean vehicle usage.”
Stevens will continue his role as a board member for NTEA’s Green Truck Association, and will moderate an alternative fuels session at the upcoming NTEA Green Truck Summit on March 4.
Stevens attended Purdue University and received a Bachelor of Arts in mechanical engineering, and later an M.B.A. from the University of Detroit, Mercy. In addition to his knowledge under the hood, Stevens professionally drove racecars for 13 years.
LARA’s Office of Regulatory Reinvention recently approved a revision (2013-108 LR) to the regulations governing compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicle fuel systems in Michigan. Currently, the State is using the 1992 edition of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Code. New rules would simplify several existing requirements by adopting the 2013 edition of the NFPA code, along with amendments requested by members of the CNG regulated community. undergoing an interagency review. The proposed revision is currently undergoing an interagency review, with a public comment period to follow. For the latest information, please visit the Office of Regulatory Reinvention online.
Free First Responder Safety Training will be offered in conjunction with the Michigan EMS Expo. The educational conference takes place at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids and runs April 24-27. The interactive workshop is taught by Lieutenant Carl Hein with the Ann Arbor Fire Department, and coordinated with our training partner Macomb Community College. Please consider sharing this opportunity with your respective public safety departments. For more information, contact Deborah Brunell-Ross with Macomb Community College at email@example.com, or (586) 498-4110.
Employers: are you looking for an innovative employee benefits program?
The HEAL program helps employees make their homes more energy efficient – saving them money each month on their energy bills and ultimately reducing community-wide greenhouse gas emissions. Think of it as an extension of your workplace sustainability efforts.
Through HEAL, Clean Energy Coalition provides home energy audits to participating employees, helps them decide on what steps to take to improve their homes, and ensures that vetted contractors deliver high-quality work. The program includes employer-sponsored or third-party financing and also connects participants with any utility rebates that might apply.
After successfully piloting the HEAL program in 2013, Clean Energy Coalition is now looking for new employer partners that are interested in enhancing their employee benefit offerings or broadening their corporate sustainability programs. Contact us now to learn more.
“The assistance provided by Clean Energy Coalition was outstanding. They made the process so much easier. I would not have participated otherwise.” – Employee Participant, survey response
“HEAL is a great addition to our employee benefit offerings. Not only will it enable employees to better understand and improve their homes, but they will also have the opportunity to take steps to experience real savings each month.” – Paul Saginaw, Zingerman’s Community of Businesses
In 2006, Architecture 2030, a non-profit organization working to rapidly transform the built environment, formally issued the 2030 Challenge. The challenge is a global call to curb emissions that identifies buildings as primary targets for reductions. The end goal of the challenge is for all new buildings and major renovations to be designed and built to be carbon neutral by 2030. It “allows up to 20% of the overall reduction to come from off-site renewable energy.”
According to Architecture 2030, we need to significantly reduce total global energy consumption and emissions in order to reverse the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere to a “safe” long-term level of 350 parts per million (ppm). The current level is around 398 ppm and 450 ppm represents the point after which climate change may be irreversible.
The 2030 Challenge
“The 2030 Challenge sets achievable and affordable targets to dramatically reduce the energy consumption of the Building Sector by 2030 and beyond.”
Source ©2010 2030 Inc. / Architecture 2030. All Rights Reserved.
*Using no fossil fuel GHG-emitting energy to operate.
Adopters of the 2030 Challenge agree to track their energy use and implement reductions below a 2003 baseline, starting at 60% today and increasing to carbon neutral or 100% reduction by 2030. The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager online tool provides an easy platform for facility managers to capture their actual utility usage and track their progress.
One auxiliary objective of this call to action is the 2030 Challenge for Planning. Beyond efforts to reduce energy consumption of buildings, a reduction in water consumption and CO2 emissions from transportation was incorporated into the original challenge. Also, acknowledging the difficulties faced by existing buildings expecting minimal capital investment before 2030, more appropriate targets were set for them — a 10% reduction below the regional average for building energy, water consumption, and CO2 from auto and freight by 2015. This standard will increase to 20% in 2020, 35% in 2025, and 50% in 2030.
The 2030 Challenge for Planning: Existing Buildings
While these targets may appear arbitrary, they are grounded in “A Historic Opportunity” defined by Architecture 2030 and are based on the already expected changes in the built environment (demolition, renovation, new construction) to deal with aging facilities and accommodate new square footage. Both are new major asset investments and thus every construction project provides the opportunity to become a high performance (low emissions) facility. Many design, business and industry leaders are already accepting the challenge, learning through experience and sharing results.
In an effort to accelerate the inclusion of energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements in Southeast Michigan, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Huron Valley chapter is challenging buildings in the area to an energy saving competition — A2 Kilowatt Crackdown 2014.
The A2 Kilowatt Crackdown aims to encourage efficient practices in buildings and to instill a spirit of friendly competition among the area’s building owners and operators. Throughout the year, building owner + energy advisor teams will measure, track and report monthly energy consumption using the EPA’s Portfolio Manager energy use tracking tool. Monthly lunch events will be held to share case studies, best practices and strategies.
A pilot group of AIA Huron Valley members have been tracking 10 buildings in the area for the last year. Pilot members include Jan Culbertson, AIA, Sharon Sargo and Lissa Spitz, A3C Collaborative Architecture; John Beeson, AIA, Catalyst Partners; Bonnie Bona, AIA, Clean Energy Coalition; Philip Proefrock, AIA CoStudio Architects, Mark Melchi, AIA, MAV Development, Margaret E. Matta, AIA; Seth Penchansky, AIA and Dan Whisler, AIA, Penchansky-Whisler Architects; and Jhana Frederiksen, Associate AIA, Quinn Evans Architects. The Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority is a sponsor of the competition.
The competition is open to any building or tenant space responsible for at least one utility meter. Registration is free an open now through March 31, 2014. Find rules, prizes and online registration at www.a2kilowattcrackdown.org.
Most of us want to spend less on energy and use fewer fossil fuels and more renewable energy. Yet, few of us have the right resources to move forward to make this transition. Perhaps you need an experienced thought leader on energy issues to assist with the grant writing process? Clean Energy Coalition can help.
Your business may be eligible to apply for one of many federal, state or local government grants, direct loans, and loan guarantee programs in the clean energy field. Clean Energy Coalition can offer its turn-key grant writing services to help your business secure these funds.
In just six years, Clean Energy Coalition has secured more than $60 million in Midwest-focused clean energy projects, drawing from a variety of sources such as government grants, foundations and private contributions, including:
Grant writing for public and nonprofit agencies, and select private entities, is one of our core competencies. Our professional staff provide turn-key grant writing services including grant source research, program design, needs assessment, budgeting and final submission packages.
To help you meet grant program goals, requirements, and deadlines, we also provide a range of program management services, including project design and implementation.
Contact Clean Energy Coalition today to assess your clean energy funding strategy and need for turn-key grant writing services.
Business Development Manager
734.585.5720 x 27
Question of the Month: What driver behaviors can help reduce petroleum consumption?
Answer: There are many simple changes fleet managers and individual drivers can adopt to improve vehicle efficiency, decrease fuel consumption, save money, and reduce emissions. In fact, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory found that improved driving behavior can reduce fuel consumption by an average of 10% and up to 20% for aggressive drivers; see the final report athttp://www.nrel.gov/vehiclesandfuels/vsa/pdfs/50836.pdf. Below are strategies fleet managers and individuals may consider to improve fuel efficiency.
Fuel Conservation Techniques for Drivers
Both fleets and individual drivers can save fuel by implementing the following practices:
Fuel Conservation Strategies for Fleet Managers
Fleet managers can adopt the following fuel conservation strategies to maximize their fleet’s fuel efficiency:
o Give Feedback: Fleet managers can use fuel-tracking devices or GPS-based telematics systems to track fuel economy, idle time, vehicle routes, and driver performance to provide drivers with feedback on how to improve. Some systems even provide drivers with instantaneous alerts when they are exhibiting inefficient driving behaviors, such as speeding. Some fleets pair drivers with coaches to critique driver behaviors. Driver feedback may improve fuel economy by 3% to 10%.
o Optimize Routes: Route optimization technologies help drivers plan routes that can reduce mileage, stops, acceleration events, number of vehicles needed, and time spent in traffic. Fleet managers can view data for individual drivers or for the entire fleet to view their progress and target areas of improvement.
More information on adjusting driver behavior to improve fuel efficiency can be found on the AFDC Efficient Driving Behaviors to Conserve Fuel page (http://www.afdc.energy.gov/conserve/driving_behavior.html) and on FuelEconomy.gov (http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/drive.shtml).
For more information contact:
Project Manager and Clean Cities Coordinator – Detroit
Project Manager and Clean Cities Coordinator – Ann Arbor
On December 31, 2013, a number of federal tax incentives expired, including:
While tax incentives have been extended retroactively after their expiration date in the past, Congress has not passed legislation to do so.
Full descriptions of these incentives can be found on the AFDC Federal Laws and Incentives page (http://www.afdc.energy.gov/laws/laws/US). The descriptions will remain posted there until the federal tax filing deadline.
For more information on these tax credits and incentives or others contact:
Business Development Manager
734-585-5720 x 27
One of Southeast Michigan’s premier auto dealerships, LaFontaine Chevrolet, says it expects to see continued interest in electric vehicles. Just 10 miles from Ann Arbor, LaFontaine Chevrolet sits in Dexter, Michigan a town of less than 5,000 residents. The dealership sold more than 75 Chevrolet Volts in 2013 and attributes its sales success to an active local buying market and a residential electric vehicle supply equipment rebate program from DTE Energy, which expired earlier this year. The dealership’s commitment to exceptional customer service and sustainable facility improvements isn’t hurting sales either.
At LaFontaine Chevrolet, the Volt seems custom built for its new 30,000+ square foot energy efficient, LEED Silver facility. LaFontaine makes sure its customers and staff members understand the group’s commitment to sustainability. As the first LEED Silver Chevrolet dealership in the U.S., the dealership operates much like the Chevy Volt — saving energy while improving performance. A spokesperson for the dealership estimates the new facility is roughly 30% more energy efficient than a traditional dealership facility.
“We walk all of our customers through the facility and show them what we’ve done here — they like to see we’re committed to reducing our impact,” says sales associate Bryan Sorenson. It seems to be working. LaFontaine Chevrolet is following the playbook from the company’s Buick store in Highland, Michigan. Since the Buick store built its new LEED Gold facility in 2010, the dealership won GM’s prestigious “Dealer of the Year Award” all three years since it opened, which measures dealers on sales, service and facility quality. Last year, it won the #1 Buick store in the U.S., a tremendous achievement by all measures.
Completed in 2012, the dealer facility includes the following investments in effort to reduce energy and environmental impact:
ROUSH CleanTech, an active member of 30 Clean Cities Coalitions, has grown from six to 80 employees in the past three years. Jack Roush, of Roush Enterprises, opened ROUSH CleanTech in 2010 to specialize in alternative fuel vehicles.
The rapid growth of Michigan-based ROUSH CleanTech has contributed to many corporate fleets adopting vehicles fueled by clean burning, domestically produced propane autogas. For the 4,000 propane autogas units sold in 2013, about 140 million gallons of gasoline and diesel will be displaced over the lifetime of those vehicles. Plus, the company creates a new job at its headquarters or within its supply chain for every 100 units sold.
“ROUSH CleanTech delivers clean and domestically produced fueling options that help companies across the country meet sustainability goals, combat fuel costs and reduce dependence on foreign oil,” says Todd Mouw, the company’s vice president of sales and marketing.
Not only does ROUSH CleanTech specialize in developing clean products, the company’s operations are also environmentally conscious. ROUSH CleanTech has reduced its waste at a 3:1 rate by using Energy Star appliances and trash compacting. And the 65,000 square foot facility was built with clean building materials, such as recycled carpet and furniture, and low volatile organic compound paints and adhesives.
ROUSH CleanTech currently produces propane autogas fuel systems for light- and medium- duty Ford commercial vehicles, Type A Micro Bird and Type C Blue Bird school buses. For 2014, the company plans to launch propane autogas powered Ford Transit vans and wagons.