Drivers of flex-fuel vehicles now have more options for filling up their tanks, thanks to new E85 pumps recently installed at the Romulus BP gas station, located at 15024 Middlebelt Road (map).
To celebrate the biofuel pumps, this station will be offering E85 at a discounted price — just $2.99 per gallon —from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, May 22. (Customers are limited to no more than 40 gallons each.)
E85 is a blend of 15% unleaded gasoline and 85% ethanol, a renewable biofuel primarily produced from corn. This alternative fuel can be used in flex-fuel vehicles, which have an internal combustion engine that runs on either E85 or gasoline.
“We’re delighted to now offer our customers a new fuel option: E85. Approximately 8 million flex-fuel vehicles are on the roads in the United States, but many drivers don’t realize their cars are E85-compatible. It’s our hope that the increased availability of this fuel will encourage drivers to try E85 for themselves,” said Ali Dakroub, gas station owner/operator.
“As a renewable, domestically-produced fuel, ethanol helps our country increase its energy security and break our dependence on foreign oil. It has environmental benefits too – E85 reduces greenhouse gas emissions by up to 52% compared to gasoline, providing drivers with an opportunity to reduce their personal impact on the environment. Once scarce, E85 is now more widely available, thanks to forward-thinking gas station owners like Dakroub,” said Aaron Champion, coordinator of Detroit Area Clean Cities, which is managed by Clean Energy Coalition.
Funding for the E85 pump installation was provided in part by the U.S. Department of Energy’s I-75 Green Corridor Project, managed in Michigan by Clean Energy Coalition.
Scheduled for startup in early May 2013, the City of Riverview, Michigan’s Riverview Land Preserve will convert about 100 standard cubic feet per minute of excess landfill gas into about 500 gallons of gasoline equivalent of compressed natural gas (CNG). This new vehicle fueling system is in addition to the existing 6.4 MW landfill-gas-to-energy plant already on site, which produces enough energy to power nearly 4,000 homes (data based on the EPA’s LFG Energy Benefits Calculator).
BioCNG, LLC, is part of a team that is assisting with the development of a BioCNG™ alternative vehicle fuel system for the Riverview site. The City is using the patent pending BioCNG vehicle fuel system to convert a portion of landfill gas into CNG, which will be used to fuel City vehicles. Cornerstone Environmental Group, LLC was the City’s engineer for this work.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, landfills are the third-largest source of human-related methane emissions in the United States. Landfills often flare off these emissions; but in Riverview’s case, the gas will be refined for pipline distribution, increasing the proportion of methane and decreasing the proportion of carbon dioxide and contaminants through absorption, adsorption, membrane separation, or cryogenic separation. Using an EPA emissions calculator developed specifically for projects like this one, 100 standard cubic feet per minute will yield a reduction of 1,372 tons of annual CO2 emissions, the equivelant of 1.3M gallons of gasoline or heating for 340 homes.
The BioCNG system will initally be used to fuel two City pick-up trucks and at least one articulated dump truck, with three or four new dual-fuel pickup trucks to be added next fiscal year. The City also hopes to convert the majority of its fleet including its police interceptors to CNG vehicles. Eventually, the City will make the fuel available to neighboring communities and the landfill’s commercial customers.
Robert Bobeck, director of the Riverview Land Preserve, said, “The City is excited about using our resource to provide the same level of service at lower cost to our citizens, and in a greener fashion.”
On Monday, April 22, DTE Energy announced volume discount pricing for compressed natural gas (CNG) at all of its public fueling stations in Michigan.
Through the end of 2014, Michigan fleets that purchase more than 25,000 gallons of CNG annually will receive the discount. At the lowest tier pricing (more than 100,000 gallons), fleets will pay $1.75 per GGE, more than $2 less than the current average retail price of diesel per gallon in Michigan.
For more information, please contact:
With a move to the Washington, DC, the 2013 Alternative Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo will help commemorate the 20th anniversary of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program. The expo takes place June 24-27 at Walter E. Washington Convention Center.
This annual event is North America’s largest alternative fuels and advanced clean vehicles conference and expo — representing electric, hybrid, hydrogen, natural gas, propane autogas, and renewable fuels.
ACT Expo brings together more than 3,000 stakeholders — Clean Cities coalitions, public and private fleets, technology companies, OEMs, fuel providers, infrastructure developers, and policymakers — for a real world look at the exciting and rapidly evolving clean transportation industry.
Now in its third year, ACT Expo provides strong educational content, hands-on access to new technologies, and valuable networking opportunities to progressive transportation professionals worldwide.
Free Expo Hall Pass
As an Endorsing Organization for the event, Clean Energy Coalition is offering supporters and email subscribers a free expo hall pass to the event. To redeem this offer, simply complete the linked form and bring it with you to the event – no advance registration is required.
Clean Energy Coalition coordinated a tent at the event, assembling a collection of exhibitors to showcase clean energy resources and ways to reduce energy use. Exhibitors included:
Clean Energy Coalition exhibited at the festival as well and spoke to area residents about the bike sharing program, slated to launch in Spring 2014, we’re creating in conjunction with City of Ann Arbor, University of Michigan, AATA, and Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority.
In collaboration with Recycle Ann Arbor, Earth Day Festival was a zero waste awareness event. Exhibitors and food vendors were encouraged to only distribute materials that were locally recyclable, compostable, or reusable. 92% of the waste from the event was diverted from the landfill.
Thanks to everyone who attended 2013 Earth Day Festival. See you next year!
Clean Energy Coalition is hiring!
We’re seeking someone to fill the Program Director role, which is a senior leadership position with responsibility for the management and oversight of program supervisors, project managers, project associates, part-time interns, and volunteers, as well as responsibility for the direct management of identified projects as needed.
This leader will assist team members in the development and implementation of building- and transportation-related clean energy projects and programs.
Please see the linked position description for details and information on how to apply.
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is teaming up with Clean Energy Coalition to reduce the environmental impact of its fleet by about 15% and share information about alternative fuels and fuel-efficient driving habits with the 1.3 million visitors who visit the national park each year.
Sleeping Bear Dunes will deploy three Chevrolet Volt plug-in electric vehicles, two liquefied petroleum gas-fueled pick-up trucks, and four electric vehicle charging stations. The park will also implement a public awareness campaign to communicate fuel-efficient driving behaviors to park visitors and staff. These measures will reduce the environmental impact of the national park’s fleet and encourage visitors to reduce the environmental impact of their own vehicles.
Clean Energy Coalition and Sleeping Bear Dunes staff will review new materials developed by the U.S. Department of Energy and National Park Service before they are introduced to parks across the country. This “Green Rides Toolkit,” developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, will support training and outreach programs to educate staff, concessioners, volunteers, and visitors about the benefits of alternative fuel vehicles, as well as idle reduction and other efficient driving habits.
“This project is an important step toward using alternative fuel technologies in our fleet and complements our plan to become a Climate Friendly Park by reducing our impact on the environment and operating more efficiently,” said National Lakeshore Superintendent Dusty Shultz. “Our new alternative fuel vehicles will emit fewer greenhouse gases, reducing air pollution and helping preserve the park’s natural environment.”
The partnership is made possible through the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities National Parks Initiative, which was developed to demonstrate how technologies and expertise from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program can help complement the mission of the National Park Service, promoting the use and enjoyment of national parks while preserving natural and historic resources. Clean Energy Coalition manages three Clean Cities coalitions in Michigan: Ann Arbor, Detroit Area, and West Michigan.
Auburn Hills-based FEV Inc., a global engineering services leader, has agreed to participate in the ENERGY STAR® Challenge for the Industry in an effort to improve efficiency. The ENERGY STAR Challenge, initiated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, asks partnering organizations to reduce energy consumption in their facilities by 10% or more over a five-year period.
FEV identified three distinct tiers for improvement in its efforts to meet the energy efficiency goals. The company also created an ENERGY STAR Team headed by president and CEO Gary Rogers. Once the decision was made to participate, a kick-off meeting was scheduled to discuss and agree on the background, goals, and FEV’s pattern of energy consumption.
Three-Tier Implementation Plan
Since the initial meeting, FEV has enacted numerous initiatives, engaging its employees to gain commitment to adjust behaviors and focus on energy conservation. FEV’s approach is cost-neutral and allows the company to save resources by simply altering daily work routines. Example initiatives cover a wide range of activities, and many are as simple as instilling the habit of turning off lights and projectors in conference rooms after meetings.
At the second tier, the challenge requires some modest investments. During the cold winter months, the FEV ENERGY STAR Team conducted several walk-through audits of the facility using an infrared camera to identify thermal leaks. These leaks were then promptly corrected, resulting in an increase in the building’s thermal efficiency.
The third level of the challenge requires that FEV implement capital-intensive facility improvements, resulting in long-term energy and cost savings. One task in this level involves replacing over 50 inefficient lighting fixtures with more energy efficient T8 lamps. Although this step represents a $20,000 cost line, the investment is recovered in energy savings in a little over a year. A newly installed intelligent building control system also allows FEV to remotely control all HVAC units, making it possible to program patterns for maximum energy savings without any impact on employee comfort level.
Best Practice: Empowering Employees
Successful implementation requires the participation of workers in the improvement. The ENERGY STAR Team is currently reviewing opportunities to expand the system and integrate additional functions to achieve even more savings. The company’s employees are encouraged to submit ideas and suggestions on ways the company can save energy and money to a special email account set up to track these suggestions. Employee comments are gathered, reviewed, and often implemented, and all of the participants are recognized for their involvement.
Six months after implementing the ENERGY STAR Challenge, and despite a particularly cold Michigan winter (compared to the 2011-2012 season), FEV recorded significant energy efficiency gains and cost savings.
The team will continue to meet the requirements of the challenge by embarking on new initiatives and reinforcing existing ones. FEV’s goal is to meet the challenge’s requirements well before the five-year deadline.
Wondering How to Implement Energy Efficiency Projects at Your Place of Work?
Clean Energy Coalition helps various entities work through the implementation process of clean energy and energy efficiency projects. Please contact Business Development Manager Matt Sandstrom for more information.
Clean Energy Coalition recently produced a video highlighting the use of propane, a clean-burning, high-energy fuel.
The video features an interview with ICOM North America CEO Ralph Perpetuini, who discusses the company’s long history of developing breakthrough technology to make vehicles cleaner.
ICOM North America’s systems are found in fleets across the country, including companies like Metro Cars, Menards, and Lake Michigan Mailers.
Want to see your organization featured in a video like this? Ask Matt Sandstrom about joining Clean Energy Coalition’s Community Partners program.
The public input process announced last year in Gov. Rick Snyder’s Special Message on Energy and the Environment is now underway with the launch of a new website for the Michigan Energy Office and public forums occurring throughout the state.
The information gathered online and at the public forums will help policymakers and the public take a comprehensive look at Michigan’s energy future. Gov. Snyder will rely on the results of this process when making his comprehensive recommendations regarding Michigan’s energy future in December 2013. This process will enable policymakers to implement new decisions about our energy framework that will enhance Michigan’s adaptability, reliability, affordability, and environment.
Attend a Public Forum
Seven public forums were scheduled for early 2013 – most have already been held, but two are occurring within the next few weeks.
Michigan Public Service Commission Chairman John D. Quackenbush and Michigan Energy Office Director Steve Bakkal – the officials charged by the governor with co-chairing and overseeing the public input process – host the events.
Voice Your Opinion Online
The revamped Michigan Energy Office website accepts public comments through April 25.
To assist the policymakers who will be making decisions, commenters are encouraged to submit factual questions, information, reports, and suggestions on what information is needed to make good energy decisions.
To help guide the process, co-chairs Quackenbush and Bakkal have developed a series of questions that asks for specific information about renewable energy, energy efficiency, and the regulatory structure for electricity, as well as other energy topics. To keep the focus on verifiable facts, commenters are asked to refrain from advocating or recommending a particular policy.
Take this opportunity to impact future energy policies – voice your opinion by attending a public forum or commenting online.