Prepare your properties for Michigan’s long, cold winters by making energy efficient upgrades that will save you money and make your tenants more comfortable. Investments in energy efficiency not only reduce your maintenance costs, but they also improve the marketability of your properties by attracting and keeping tenants.
The a2energy Loan Fund for Rental Housing offers eligible rental property owners access to low-interest financing for energy efficiency retrofits, such as insulation, air sealing, HVAC upgrades, and select ENERGY STAR products.
The Loan Fund provides:
In order to qualify, properties must:
For more information and to see if you qualify, visit a2gov.org/loanfund
Sign up here to receive more information on how to apply for the program, or contact:
734-585-5720 ext. 16
What better way to celebrate the first day of spring than by riding around town or running your errands on an ArborBike?
Stations will go live Friday, March 20, 2015 and remain active until late fall 2015. There are currently 6 active stations around the University of Michigan campus and downtown at the Ann Arbor District Library with a total of 45 bikes available for use.
Anyone interested in becoming an ArborBike member can visit arborbike.org. Memberships are available as a day-pass, month-pass, or annual pass. ArborBike members can checkout a bike at any station and ride, free of usage fees, for up to 60 minutes. At the end of the 60-minute period, users must return to a kiosk. If desired, users can then immediately check a bike back out and continue riding. Additional user fees are only incurred on rides over 60 minutes in length. As a bike share system, ArborBike is meant to encourage short trips in and around the downtown and campus areas.
The 2014 ArborBike season closed with 293 users and 690 trips taken over the 2 months that the bikes were available. The 2015 season is expected to see a dramatic increase in ridership, due to the extended length of the season and a scheduled expansion early summer 2015.
Eight additional stations are scheduled to launch throughout downtown Ann Arbor at the end of May 2015 with a ribbon-cutting event in early June 2015. The installation of these remaining stations will bring the station count to 14 and the available bikes to 125. To check out the locations of the stations, visit arborbike.org/map.
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
Clean Energy Coalition is excited to announce that ArborBike, Ann Arbor’s bike share program, is now live with six active locations. For a complete station list, visit ArborBike.org.
ArborBike will help residents, students, commuters, and visitors in Ann Arbor get around the area. The highly anticipated program went live Thursday, September 25th with the roll out of 40+ bikes. It’s clear that the program is in high demand; over 145 memberships have already been purchased and 210 trips have been taken.
ArborBike offers users several membership options including a daily pass ($6), monthly access ($9.99), and an annual membership ($65). Once registered, members can checkout a bike, ride, and return the bike to any of the stations. Memberships can be purchased online at ArborBike.org or at any of the kiosk locations. The current stations will be open through the fall and into early winter, weather permitting.
Currently, 40+ bikes and 6 kiosks are installed. A full deployment of all 14 locations and 125 bikes will take place in April 2015.
Thank you to our sponsors for making this launch a success! ArborBike sponsors include:
Information about sponsoring ArborBike stations, bikes, and memberships may be found on-line or in our sponsorship packet. Contact Heather Seyfarth at firstname.lastname@example.org for details about these and other opportunities. Also download the ArborBike Sponsorship Packet for more information.
Additionally, we would like to thank our 53 volunteers who came out at the end of August to assemble 44 bikes. Volunteers included community organizations such as Programs to Educate All Cyclists (PEAC), the Washtenaw Biking and Walking Coalition, and Circle K, a Kiwanis-affiliated volunteer student organization at the University of Michigan. This remarkable display of support was a clear sign that the community is interested and supportive of the program.
Clean Energy Coalition manages and operates the ArborBike program. If you have any questions regarding the program or how to sign-up, please email info@ArborBike.org.
On September 10, Clean Energy Coalition hosted its second annual clean fuel policy luncheon in Lansing. The event focused on creating a climate of political support for clean fuels and advanced vehicle technologies. Speakers from Clean Energy Coalition, Schupan & Sons Inc., and the City of Auburn Hills were joined by industry experts and advocates to discuss the importance of supporting this growing, domestically-supportive market through legislation. The event was part of Clean Energy Coalition’s on-going Michigan Fuel Forward project, which aims to identify and eliminate common barriers to the use of clean fuels. Over 70 legislators and staff attended what turned out to be an overwhelmingly successful event.
Chris Kolb of the Michigan Environmental Council kicked off the meeting, with welcoming remarks coming shortly thereafter from Senator Kowall and Representative Driskell. Josh Rego of Clean Energy Coalition then took the stage, discussing trends in the clean fuel vehicle market, including the anticipated 524% rise in clean fuel vehicles on the road and the broad economic impact of supporting the deployment of these technologies in Michigan. Allison Skinner, also with Clean Energy Coalition, discussed a report recently released by the organization titled “Alternative Fuels: A State Policy Analysis”. The report outlines the piecemeal approach to alternative fuel policies being used by states across the country, identifies which policies tend to be associated with higher rates of clean vehicle use, and highlights the extensive work that needs to be done by Midwestern states to catch up to the support being shown in other states. Anchoring the event was Chris Milani with Schupan & Sons, Inc. Mr. Milani described the benefit of clean fuels in their ongoing fleet operations, and the role federal policies played in allowing them to pursue clean, domestically-produced fuels.
The event was followed by a panel discussion, where speakers were joined by Ron Melchert, Director of Public Works at the City of Auburn Hills to answer questions from legislators and staff. The event was also covered by WILX in Lansing in this news segment. From here, Clean Energy Coalition will continue to work with legislators and other key organizations to create political support for clean fuels here in Michigan.
For more information on clean fuels or clean fuel policy, please contact:
Ann Arbor Area Clean Cities Coordinator
(734) 585-5720 x25
They did it! Clean Energy Coalition’s team of four crossed the finish line on September 9th after riding their bicycles for four days and 300 miles from Grand Rapids, Michigan to Chicago, Illinois as part of a multi-day charitable bicycling event called Climate Ride. Not only did these individuals put in countless training hours this past summer in preparation, but they also fundraised a total of $13,831 from 224 donations for Clean Energy Coalition, a beneficiary of the event.
While bicycling 10+ hours each day, our riders were able to enjoy the amazing scenery and unique gems the Midwest has to offer. They also had the chance to network with 110+ leaders and activists in the field as well as hear from expert speakers each night on topics ranging from sustainable food choice, the health of the Great Lakes, and Chicago petcoke. With so many amazing experiences to choose from, we wanted to know what their favorite part was. Here’s what we found out:
Overall, the riders couldn’t stress enough the impact of their Climate Ride experience. When asked if they would do Climate Ride again, we heard “in a heartbeat.” Since Climate Ride offers multiple trips – California North Coast, NYC-DC, in addition to the Midwest ride – we may just see these riders in another part of the country.
If you’re interested in giving our riders a pat on the back as well as supporting Clean Energy Coalition’s work, donations can still be accepted online until the end of the year.
To learn more about their experience or about how to take part in Climate Ride, please contact:
Nicole Ver Kuilen
734-585-5720 ext. 37
Clean Energy Coalition seeks energetic and committed Part-time Bike Share Technicians to support ArborBike, the newly created Ann Arbor bike share program. Bike share technicians will work closely with the public, the ArborBike team, and other Clean Energy Coalition staff.
Please see the linked position description for details and information on how to apply.
DATE: SEPTEMBER 4, 2014
TIME: 12:00 PM EST
There will be an estimated 22 million alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) on US roads by 2020. This means that AFV sales will increase by 7.3% each year for the next 25 years. Dealerships that thrive in this new automotive paradigm will be those that have the knowledge and competency to sell these cleaner, more efficient vehicles. Clean Energy Coalition invites dealerships and vehicle sales professionals to a half-hour seminar on tips for selling alternative fuel vehicles. Speakers from ASG Renaissance will discuss why it is critical that all vehicle salespeople know how to sell electric, compressed natural gas, propane, and other alternative fuel vehicles. Clean Energy Coalition staff will highlight important vehicle and fuel information.
To register for the webinar, click here or visit: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/789012103107905794
In July 2014, Clean Energy Coalition completed an exhaustive review of state-level alternative fuel policy across the United States. This research provides a valuable look at various policies adopted throughout the United States, and how these policies might relate to the number of AFVs and alternative fueling infrastructure in each state. By comparing the strength of relationship between certain policies and AFVs per capita, we can determine which types of policies might be more effective at promoting the proliferation of AFVs and the use of alternative fuels. The research began by categorizing each of over 900 state policies based on fuel, policy mechanism, offering body, and targeted market. The research then examined correlations between different types of policy and the number of AFVs in each state.
The paper finds that there are three important distinctions that impact AFV policy: the origination of the policy (whether it is a state, local, or utility policy), the target of the policy (who is affected by the policy), and the type of policy mechanism (e.g., financial incentive, or a fee/tax policy). For example, this research suggests that states with more laws and incentives that originate at the local or utility level are more likely to have a higher number of AFVs per capita. This indicates that decision makers should encourage the use of local policy to promote AFVs, and work with utilities or the state’s public service commission to promote the use of alternative fuels and AFVs. Although most current policy is targeted toward the commercial sector (especially so for grants and rebates), states that have more laws and incentives targeted to the residential sector are more likely to have a higher number of AFVs per capita. Ultimately, the paper identifies three main incentive mechanisms that have the strongest correlations with AFV deployment.
To read the full text of the paper, visit the Clean Energy Coalition website here.
For more information, please contact:
734-585-5720 ext. 16