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Oberlin Fleet and Fuel Emissions Reduction Strategy

The City of Oberlin, Ohio, along with nine other public and private-sector fleets in Loraine County, selected Clean Energy Coalition to deliver fleet analysis services and strategies for adopting alternative fuel vehicles, and a fuel infrastructure feasibility study over seven months. The Oberlin Fleet and Fuel Emissions Reduction Strategy (OFFERS) project was funded by a grant from the State of Ohio’s Local Government Innovation Fund.

The project defined strategies to reduce fuel costs and greenhouse gas emissions of the partner fleets by 15% over three years. As one of 18 Clinton Foundation Climate Positive Development Program cities, The City of Oberlin, Oberlin College, and their partners, committed to reducing Oberlin’s greenhouse gas emissions below zero.

Clean Energy Coalition utilized its Fuel Forward® fleet analysis service, an objective approach to identifying and evaluating the impact of alternative fuel vehicle deployment strategies with calculations for fuel cost savings, GHG emissions avoided, petroleum displaced, and economic paybacks. The analysis also identifies behavioral and operational improvements that will reduce overall fuel consumption and improve fleet efficiency. Calculations comparing the emissions and petroleum use impacts of various fuels are based on nationally recognized standards, including Argonne National Laboratory’s GREET Model and the EPA Diesel Emissions Quantifier.

The program included partner organizations: Oberlin City Schools, New Russia Township, Kendal at Oberlin, Lorain County Joint Vocational School, Lorain County Community College, Lorain County Metroparks, Oberlin College, Republic Services and Custom Cleaning Services.

To meet the overall goals of the project, the fleet analysis began with gaining a clear understanding of the unique issues each fleet faced. Clean Energy Coalition’s team conducted an analysis of the fleet vehicles, fueling and logistics, and driver behavior. Combining this information with fleet data that included make, model, year, annual mileage, current odometer, annual fuel use, departmental/driver assignments, and annual maintenance costs, the data was used to create a baseline of fuel and maintenance costs, GHG emissions, and petroleum use. The fleet partners and Clean Energy Coalition worked together to identify priority scenarios for replacing conventional vehicles with alternative fuel vehicles, including biofuels, natural gas, propane, electric, and hybrid technology.