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Question of the Month: How is fuel economy determined and reported for alternative fuel vehicles?

December 22, 2016 by Clean Cities

Last month we learned about how the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) determines and reports conventional light-duty vehicle fuel economy ratings. While alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) fuel economy testing is largely similar to that of conventional fuels, the EPA makes some adjustments to account for different vehicle technology and fuel energy content. By tailoring AFV fuel economy testing and reporting, the EPA is able to provide apples-to-apples comparisons and allow consumers to make informed decisions.

PHEV_FE_label

All-Electric Vehicles

What’s Reported: The fuel economy label for all-electric vehicles (EVs) includes all of the same information as that listed for gasoline vehicles (fuel economy, fuel cost savings, annual fuel cost, and emissions). However, EV labels list fuel economy using miles per gallon of gasoline-equivalent (MPGe), sometimes referred to as miles per gasoline gallon equivalent (MPGGE). MPGe represents the number of miles a vehicle can go using a quantity of fuel with the same energy content as a gallon of gasoline. MPGe is a useful way to compare gasoline vehicles with vehicles that use fuel not dispensed in gallons. EV labels also include the following information:

  • Vehicle Charge Time: Indicates how long it takes to charge a fully discharged battery using Level 2, 240-volt electric vehicle supply equipment.
  • Driving Range: Estimates the approximate number of miles that a vehicle can travel in combined city and highway driving before the battery must be recharged.
  • Fuel Consumption Rate: Shows how many kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity an EV would use to travel 100 miles. Like gallons per 100 miles, the kWh per 100 miles relates directly to the amount of fuel used. It is an estimated rate of consumption rather than economy (measured in miles per gallon [MPG] or MPGe), which allows for more accurate energy usage comparisons between vehicles.

What’s Tested: To test EV fuel economy, the vehicle battery is fully charged and the vehicle is parked overnight. The next day, the vehicle is tested over successive city cycles until the battery is depleted. The battery is then recharged and the energy consumption of the vehicle is determined by dividing the kWh of energy needed to recharge the battery by the miles traveled by the vehicle. MPGe is based on this figure. The process is repeated for highway driving cycles, and the combined city and highway fuel consumption and MPGe is based on the standard ratio of 55% city and 45% highway driving.

Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles

What’s Reported: Like EVs, plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) fuel economy labels include fuel cost savings, annual fuel cost, and emissions information. For PHEVs that can use either electricity or gasoline (but only one fuel at a time), also known as non-blended or series PHEVs, labels include information for the fuel economy of both fuel modes. The electricity information is identical to that of EVs, listing charge time, fuel economy in MPGe, and fuel consumption rate in kWh per 100 miles. The gasoline information provides fuel economy in MPG and fuel consumption information in gallons per 100 miles. PHEV fuel economy labels also include electricity only, gasoline only, and combined electricity and gasoline driving range estimates. For PHEVs that use electricity and gasoline at the same time, also known as blended or parallel PHEVs, fuel economy labels reflect the fuel economy, fuel consumption, and range of the vehicle when it uses its standard electricity and gasoline mix.

What’s Tested: Because series PHEVs can use either electricity or gasoline, the EPA determines a vehicle’s fuel economy and fuel consumption based both on its use of only electricity and only gasoline. To determine a PHEV’s electric fuel economy, the EPA issues testing methodology nearly identical to that of EVs. If the gasoline engine is required to complete the test cycle, the EPA methodology uses both the electric energy consumption and the gasoline consumption to calculate the MPGe values for the electric operation only. Vehicle testing for the gasoline operation of the vehicle is similar to any other conventional hybrid electric vehicle. Parallel PHEVs are tested using their standard mix of electricity and gasoline.

Other Alternative Fuels

What’s Reported: The EPA also requires fuel economy information for original equipment manufacturer (OEM) vehicles that use alternative fuels. This includes dedicated natural gas, propane, and hydrogen vehicles, as well as bi-fuel vehicles, such as bi-fuel natural gas, propane, and flexible fuel vehicles (vehicles that may use 51%-83% ethanol-gasoline blends). Note that the EPA does not require fuel economy testing of vehicles converted to run alternative fuels after they are purchased. While the EPA does not list fuel economy information for vehicles that use biodiesel, all diesel vehicles may use fuel blends of up to 5% biodiesel. These vehicles achieve fuel economy very similar to conventional diesel.

For vehicles that use exclusively alternative fuels (e.g., natural gas or hydrogen), the EPA lists fuel economy in MPGe in order to accurately reflect the fuel’s energy content and make easy comparisons with conventional fuel vehicles. Vehicles that can use either alternative fuels or conventional fuel, such as bi-fuel natural gas, bi-fuel propane, and flexible fuel vehicles, have fuel economy, fuel consumption, and range estimates for both the alternative and conventional fuel listed on their fuel economy labels. Fuel economy for alternative fuel use in bi-fuel and flexible fuel vehicles is listed in MPGe, while fuel economy for conventional fuel use is listed in MPG.

What’s Tested: For vehicles that run exclusively on alternative fuels, fuel economy testing methods are similar to those of conventional vehicles. For bi-fuel and flexible fuel vehicles, the vehicle fuel economy is tested as it runs exclusively on each fuel, similar to PHEVs.

For more information about AFV fuel economy, see the FuelEconomy.gov website (http://www.fueleconomy.gov/) and select from the Advanced Cars & Fuels menu. Also, view the Fuel Economy Toolkit (http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/toolkit.shtml).

Happy Holidays!

 

Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team
technicalresponse@icf.com
800-254-6735

What are the current and future light-duty vehicle fuel economy and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions standards

October 3, 2016 by Clean Cities

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), light-duty vehicles (LDVs) emit nearly 60% of transportation-related GHG emissions and use more than half of all petroleum transportation fuel in the United States. In 1975, Congress enacted the Energy Conservation and Policy Act, which directed the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to implement the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) program. The goal of the CAFE program is to reduce national energy consumption through fuel economy improvements. Specifically, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), as part of DOT, develops annual fuel economy requirements for new passenger cars and light-duty trucks. Fuel economy is measured based on the average mileage a vehicle travels per gallon of gasoline, or gallon of gasoline equivalent for other fuels.

In 2009, President Obama announced a new national program to harmonize fuel economy standards with GHG emissions standards for all new light-duty cars and trucks sold in the United States. Under this program, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) develops GHG emissions standards that correspond with NHTSA CAFE standards for each model year (MY). Thus far, the EPA and NHTSA have implemented the program in two parts, beginning with MYs 2012 to 2016 and followed by MYs 2017 to 2025. GHG emissions and CAFE standards have become increasingly stringent from one MY to the next.

In the final rule that established the coordinated standards for MYs 2017 to 2025, the EPA and NHTSA committed to perform a midterm evaluation (MTE) to (i) determine whether any changes should be made to the GHG emissions standards for MY 2022 to 2025, and (ii) set final CAFE standards for those MYs. This past July, the EPA and NHTSA completed the first step of the MTE with their issuance of a draft technical assessment report. For more information on the MTE, please see the EPA Midterm Evaluation of Light-Duty Vehicle GHG Emissions Standards page (https://www3.epa.gov/otaq/climate/mte.htm) and the NHTSA Midterm Evaluation for Light-Duty CAFE page (http://www.nhtsa.gov/Laws+&+Regulations/CAFE+-+Fuel+Economy/ld-cafe-midterm-evaluation-2022-25).

NHTSA CAFE Standards

NHTSA determines CAFE standards based on each vehicle’s size, or its footprint, which is essentially the distance between where each of its tires touches the ground. In general, the larger the vehicle is, the less stringent the fuel economy target will be. NHTSA then calculates each manufacturer’s fleet-wide compliance obligation, which is weighted based on vehicle sales (e.g., if 15% of a manufacturer’s sales are one model, that model gets a “weight” of 0.15 in average fuel economy calculation), each vehicle’s footprint, and the volume of vehicles the manufacturer actually produces.

Based on previous MY sales, NHTSA estimates that by MY 2025, passenger vehicles and light-duty trucks will need to meet an estimated combined average fuel economy of at least 48.7 to 49.7 miles per gallon. This estimate is subject to change based on the actual individual manufacturer fleet composition and production volumes. To view the annual standards, please refer to page 4 of the NHTSA CAFE Regulations for MY 2017 and Beyond fact sheet (http://www.nhtsa.gov/staticfiles/rulemaking/pdf/cafe/CAFE_2017-25_Fact_Sheet.pdf).

EPA GHG Emissions Standards

Similar to the NHTSA CAFE standards, the EPA also uses the footprint-based approach to determine carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions standards in grams per mile (g/mi) for each vehicle manufacturer. The EPA GHG emissions requirements are linked to the CAFE standards, and are also based on individual manufacturer fleet and production volumes. The EPA’s passenger car standards call for CO2 emissions reductions of 5% per year from MY 2017 to 2025. Light-duty trucks will have a bit more time to adjust to the standards, beginning with a 3.5% reduction per year from MY 2017 to MY 2021, then ramping up to a 5% reduction per year from MY 2022 to MY 2025. Refer to page 4 of the EPA GHG Emissions Standards for MY 2017-2025 fact sheet (https://www3.epa.gov/otaq/climate/documents/420f12051.pdf) to see the projected CO2 emissions targets.

Compliance

Manufacturers can meet these standards in a variety of ways. In addition to making direct improvements to vehicle components (e.g., engines and transmission efficiency, light-weighting), manufacturers may also achieve compliance by generating credits. First, manufacturers are required to calculate average fleet-wide tailpipe CO2 emissions and average fleet-wide fuel economy. These values serve as the baseline to which any additional earned credits can be added. The regulation also offers incentives to encourage advanced vehicle technologies.

These credits and incentives include:

  • Air Conditioning and Off-Cycle Improvements (EPA and NHTSA): Manufacturers can earn credits from efforts such as air conditioning efficiency improvements, as well as from off-cycle technologies that result in real-world benefits, like engine start-stop or solar panels on plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs).
  • Advanced Technology Vehicles (EPA Only): The EPA regulation also includes incentives to encourage the production of advanced technology vehicles. For MYs 2017 to 2021, manufacturers that produce all-electric vehicles, PHEVs, compressed natural gas vehicles, and fuel cell electric vehicles may “count” these vehicles as more than one vehicle in their emissions compliance calculations.
  • Hybrid Electric Full-Size Pickups (EPA and NHTSA): Manufacturers are encouraged to produce a certain percentage of full-size pickup trucks that are hybrid electric vehicles, as they will receive compliance credits for doing so.

For more information on LDV GHG emissions and CAFE standards, please refer to the following resources:

Stay tuned for next month’s Question of the Month, where we will delve into the medium- and heavy-duty engine and vehicle standards.

Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team
technicalresponse@icfi.com
800-254-6735

Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition 2016 Spring Recap

September 26, 2016 by Clean Cities

The Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition has been keeping busy, working to maintain its status as Central Florida’s leading alternative fuel technologies and vehicle advocates.  In February, Central Florida Clean Cities met virtually before a board at DOE headquarters comprised of Clean Cities Regional Managers, DOE labs personnel, and other program participants.  During this meeting, the coalition presented on its various alternative fuel and emissions reductions programs and partners, reaffirming its commitment to the Central Florida region with its many sustainability projects.  The Department of Energy has once again accepted our pledge, officially redesignating the coalition as a Clean Cities Coalition for the next three years.

The 2015 Clean Cities Annual Report was submitted in March and reflected the cumulative efforts of our Central Florida region, calculating the emissions reductions of Central Florida Clean Cities’ partner fleets.  In 2015, regional fleet managers report a cumulative 4,641,614 gallons of gasoline equivalent reductions, which means a GHG emissions reduction of almost 26,000 tons (a record high for Central Florida).  The majority of these reductions were achieved by local fleets adopting alternative fuel vehicles and infrastructure.  Congratulations, Clean Cities partners, and thank you for doing your part in enhancing transportation in our region.

Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition also did its part in attending various energy and alternative fuel vehicle conferences since the start of the year.  For instance, coalition representatives participated in the 2016 Energy Solutions Conference.  Held March 23-24, it was a sequel to the highly successful Virtual Conferences held in 2013 and 2012.  It was a Simulcast—a virtual event accessed by any computer or mobile device as well as in person at the Florida Solar Energy Center in Cocoa, FL.  The event featured presentations on energy options and choices, both now and in the future, with recognized experts from across the country speaking on topics such as renewable energy, energy efficiency, transportation planning, and more.  On Thursday, March 24, Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition Coordinator Colleen Kettles moderated a panel on Clean Cities and Alternative Fuel Vehicles, attended by representatives from various vehicle manufacturers, utilities, and clean cities stakeholders.  To learn more about this event, please visit the Energy Solutions Conference website at http://conference.energysmartplanning.org/home.html.

Next, Drive Electric Florida (DEF) hosted its first 2016 meeting in Jacksonville on Monday, April 4 at the newly constructed North Florida Regional Transportation Management Center.  This state-of-the-art center opened last November, culminating a 12 year partnership between the North Florida TPO, the Florida Dept. of Transportation, and the Florida Highway Patrol to work towards safe and efficient travel in the Northeast Florida area.  The meeting featured speakers on industry updates, utility PEV updates, EV outreach events, and DEF committee reports.  This included a report on the newly formed Drive Electric Florida Workplace Charging (WPC) Committee, which first started meeting in early 2016.  Chaired by Peter King of Jacksonville Electric Authority and staffed by the Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition, the committee is in the process of pledging to be a Workplace Charging Challenge Ambassador, working on behalf of DOE to assist local businesses with WPC adoption.  To learn more about Drive Electric Florida or the Workplace Charging Challenge, please visit the DEF website:  http://driveelectricflorida.org/.

Melbourne-Train-the-Trainer-2Central Florida Clean Cities then kicked off its First Responders Alternative Fuel Vehicle (AFV) Safety Training program in Melbourne on April 19.  This was the first of many “train the trainers” sessions, during which local first responder trainers are taught how to conduct workshops with their teams on approaching AFV collisions, particularly for propane, CNG/LNG, and electric vehicles.  This program will continue throughout the year with scheduled trainings pending in Tampa, Ocala, Broward County, and Jacksonville.

On April 20, intern Shauna Basques spoke on her year’s work with the Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition in the Clean Cities University Workforce Development Program’s end of semester presentation.  Busy staffing the Drive Electric Florida Workplace Charging Committee and assisting Coordinator Colleen Kettles with program projects and events, Shauna continued her work throughout the summer, advancing alternative fuel vehicle adoption.

2016-NASA_KSC-Earth-Day-EventCentral Florida Clean Cities also partnered with the Florida Solar Energy Center to present on energy efficiency, renewable energy, and alternative fuel vehicle solutions at the Kennedy Space Center/NASA’s Earth Day celebration, April 21 – 22.  On the event’s first day, presenters met with KSC/NASA personnel, displaying a Chevy Volt, a Nissan LEAF, and two solar ovens.  On the second day, these displays were moved into the Kennedy Space Center’s Visitor Complex, near the Rocket Garden, where presenters were able to meet with KSC visitors and staff alike, speaking on the benefits of AFVs and alternative energy sources.

EnergyWhiz took over the Florida Solar Energy Center in Cocoa, FL on Saturday, May 14.  Hundreds of students participated in renewable energy events, including a solar car sprint, an energy transfer machine competition, a solar energy cook-off, a display of EVs and the Electrathon.  For more information on the event, please visit http://www.fsec.ucf.edu/en/education/k-12/energywhiz_olympics/index.htm.

2016-Energy-Whiz-ElectrathonFinally, we attended the US DOE Clean Cities Southeast Regional Meeting in Jacksonville, May 18-20, 2016, where CFCCC Coordinator Colleen Kettles made a presentation on the FAST Act and its EV Corridor implications. On May 24, she traveled to NREL in Golden Colorado for a Clean Cities meeting on advanced technology vehicles and their impact on Clean Cities activities.

Although we’re done with spring, we’ll be reporting back on our summer events soon.  In the meantime, check out the upcoming 2016 EV Transportation and Technology Summit at http://www.EVsummit.org.  Hosted at the Florida Solar Energy Center in Cocoa, FL over October 17-20, the summit will feature presentations and industry panels on electric vehicle transportation planning, policy building, and future technologies designed to promote electric vehicle advancement.  Register now!

Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Tire Strategies to Save Fuel

June 21, 2016 by Clean Cities
What vehicle tire strategies and technologies are available to save fuel?

It’s easy to understand why tires are essential to a vehicle, but tires also play an important role in your vehicle’s fuel economy. Tires affect resistance on the road and, therefore, how hard the engine needs to work to move the vehicle. By maintaining proper tire inflation or investing in low rolling resistance or super-single tires, you can improve your vehicle’s fuel economy. Whether you drive a light-duty (LDV) or heavy-duty vehicle (HDV), there is a tire strategy or technology to help you increase your miles per gallon (mpg).

Proper Tire Inflation

Properly inflated tires increase fuel economy, last longer, and are safer. Oak Ridge National Laboratory estimates that you can improve your gas mileage by up to 3.3% by keeping your tires inflated to the proper pressure. In fact, under-inflated tires can lower gas mileage by up to 0.3% for every one pound per square inch drop in pressure in all four tires. It is especially important to keep an eye on tire pressure in cold weather because when the air in the tire becomes cold, the tire pressure decreases.

You can find the proper tire pressure for your vehicle on a sticker located on the driver’s side doorjamb or in the owner’s manual. Also, check to see if your vehicle is equipped with a tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS), which will illuminate a dashboard light when the tire inflation in one, multiple, or all tires reaches a certain pressure threshold. Fleet managers, in particular, may consider using telematics with a TPMS to assist their drivers with maintenance. Even if a vehicle has a TPMS, however, it is still good practice to manually check your vehicle’s tire pressure in order to ensure all of your tires are properly inflated.

Low Rolling Resistance Tires

Rolling resistance is the energy lost from drag and friction of a tire as it rolls over a surface. This phenomenon is complex, and nearly all operating conditions can affect how much energy is lost. For conventional and hybrid electric passenger vehicles, it is estimated that about 3%-11% of their fuel is used just to overcome tire rolling resistance, whereas all-electric passenger vehicles can use around 22%-25% of their fuel for this purpose. For heavy trucks, this fuel consumption can be around 15%-30%.

Installing low rolling resistance tires can improve vehicle fuel economy by about 3% for LDVs and more than 10% for HDVs. In LDVs, a 10% decrease in rolling resistance can increase fuel efficiency by 1%-2%. Investing in low rolling resistance tires makes economic sense, as the fuel savings from the use of these tires over the life of the vehicle can pay for the additional cost of the fuel-efficient tires. Most new passenger vehicles are equipped with low rolling resistance tires, but make sure you keep rolling resistance in mind when shopping for replacement tires.

Super-Single Tires

Reducing vehicle drag can provide significant fuel economy improvements. One way HDVs can reduce drag is by replacing traditional dual tires with one super-single tire—also called a wide-base or single-wide. In Class-8 heavy-duty vehicles, this can save fuel by reducing vehicle weight and rolling resistance. A super-single tire is not as wide as two tires, so there is a slight aerodynamic benefit as well, further improving vehicle efficiency.

More Information

For more information, see the following pages:

For more information, contact:

Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team
technicalresponse@icfi.com800-254-6735

 

 

Question of the Month: I heard the Clean Cities website was recently revamped. What changed?

December 21, 2015 by Clean Cities

Redesigned Clean Cities Website Offers Bold New Look, Enhanced User Experience

What You Should Know About Navigating The Revamped Clean Cities Website

As the work of Clean Cities continues to grow, the Clean Cities team is committed to ongoing communication about the program’s resources and accomplishments. Last month, Clean Cities launched a new and improved version of its website, which aims to highlight the program and assist the public and stakeholders.

The redesigned Clean Cities website has a fresh new look, is easy to navigate, and includes many new features to help users learn about and connect with the program.

newccwebsiteBelow are the top five changes you should know about the site:

  1. Reorganized Resources: Some resources have moved with the new design. Most notably, funding information and publications are now located in the About section, which can be accessed from the top website banner. As before, funding opportunities are separated into current and related categories, and the easily searchable publications are listed by popularity and publish date. Information about Clean Cities partnerships, such as the National Clean Fleets Partnership and the National Parks Initiative, is now conveniently accessed from the Partnerships & Projects section, which can also be accessed from the top website banner.
  2. Selective Communication Options: It’s easier than ever to stay up to date on Clean Cities. You can now subscribe to the newsletters and updates that you want —and choose to skip those you don’t! You can sign up to receive the Clean Cities Monthly Update, the Clean Cities Now Newsletter, or Webinar Alerts. The “What’s Happening?” bar on the bottom of the homepage is another easy to way to catch up on the latest events, news, blog posts, and videos.
  3. Searchable Clean Cities Projects: Under the Partnership & Projects section, which is accessed from the top website banner, users may now view and search Clean Cities funded transportation projects. You can search by keyword or filter by the initiative or award, such as projects under the National Parks Initiative, Electric Vehicle Community Readiness, or American Recovery and Reinvestment Act Project Awards. Project descriptions include basic information, states impacted, partners involved, the Clean Cities award amount, and the amount of local matching funds.
  4. Audience-Tailored Content: The new website design clearly separates information for different audiences. While the old website combined resources for the public and resources for Clean Cities coordinators, the new design restricts public access to the Coordinator Toolbox.
  5. Clean Cities On-the-Go: Lastly, the new design has an updated, clean aesthetic. From the newly organized coalition pages to the streamlined Technical Assistance page, the website is intuitive and easy to read. As an added bonus, the new website is mobile-friendly and responsive, so you can access Clean Cities information wherever you go.

Visit the updated Clean Cities website to see all of these features and more!

 

blog post written by

Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team
technicalresponse@icfi.com
800-254-6735

Central Florida Clean Cities November Recap

December 14, 2015 by Clean Cities

2015-Protec_3 On Thursday, Nov. 5, Central Florida Clean Cities welcomed its newest sponsor and member, Protec Fuels, as they sponsored a luncheon and workshop on Green Fleet Solutions. Speakers included Orlando City Commissioner and Mayor Pro Tem Jim Gray, Robert White of the Renewable Fuels Association, Bruce Chesson of NASA/KSC Transportation and Alternative Fuel Vehicle Programs, 100 Best Fleets’ Tom Johnson, David L. Dunn from City of Orlando Fleet and Facilities Management, and Protec Fuel’s Andrew Greenberg to discuss the benefits of adding E85 Flex Fuel to your fleet.

 

2015-Third-Annual-Emerald-Coast-Transportation-Symposium-The Third Annual Emerald Coast Transportation Symposium took place over Nov. 12-13 at the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort in Miramar Beach, FL.  Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition Coordinator Colleen Kettles spoke at the symposium in a panel event on renewable and alternative fuels.  Learn more about the event at http://www.wfrpc.org/events/transportation-symposium.

 

 

 

 
2014-Auto-Show_Volt-Test-DrivesFinally, we capped off the month at the Central Florida International Auto Show, which took place over Nov. 26-29 at the Orange County Convention Center.  We were able to check out many new, exciting, and game-changing alternative fuel vehicles.  Go to http://autoshoworlando.com/ to check out pictures and more information on the event.

We hope you’re all having a wonderful holiday season.  We look forward to reporting back in the new year!

 

 

EV Summit Recap

November 9, 2015 by Clean Cities

We promised you a full recap of the 2015 EV Transportation and Technology Summit, and here it is!  Held at our Florida Solar Energy Center campus in Cocoa, FL from Oct. 20-22, the event was organized by the Electric Vehicle Transportation Center of the University of Central Florida.  The Summit engaged attendees from across the country on the future of Plug-in Electric Vehicles (PEVs) and how their expanding adoption effects city, road, and development planning as well as assists in advancing technology, economics, and the environment.

The Summit kicked off with a pre-event PEV Market and Technology Workshop to discuss current trends and opportunities in PEV adoption.  After, Summit attendees were invited on a Kennedy Space Center Tour followed by the opening reception at the Cocoa Beach Courtyard Marriott.

To take a look at the Pre-Summit Workshop Materials, go to http://evtc.fsec.ucf.edu/education/short_course/EV-Workshop.html.

Day 2 began with a focus on PEV Technology, Infrastructure, Product Development, and Resources, featuring presentations on PEV technology and standards, PEV charging technology and the grid, product and market offerings, and vehicle adoption programs and resources.  Trev Hall, Clean Cities Southeast Regional Manager, provided an overview of US Department of Energy Vehicle Technology Office Resources made available through the Alternative Fuels Data Center website.  The day concluded with a PEV Vehicle Display in the Florida Solar Energy Center parking lot nearest the public PEV charging stations.

Finally, Day 3 of the EV Summit featured presentations pertaining to Planning, Policy, and the Future of PEVs.  Linda Bluestein, Co-Director for National Clean Cities, delivered a talk on PEV Public and Policy Awareness as it influences electric vehicle adoption.  Other presentations that followed included an assessment of the current state of the EV, a few discussions of future infrastructure and transportation planning goals, and a concluding panel of Florida electric utilities’ perspectives on PEV advancement.

Please visit the 2015 EV Summit website to take a look at this year’s presentations, presenters, and a full agenda at http://www.evsummit.org/schedule.php.

We thank the Electric Vehicle Transportation Center for organizing the Summit and for allowing Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition to participate in this new and educational event.  Hopefully, we’ll be seeing another wonderful EV Summit in 2016!

Other recent and upcoming events include:

On Thursday, Nov. 5, Central Florida Clean Cities welcomed its newest sponsor and member, Protec Fuels, as they sponsored a luncheon and workshop on Green Fleet Solutions. Speakers included Orlando City Commissioner and Mayor Pro Tem Jim Gray, Robert White of the Renewable Fuels Association, Bruce Chesson of NASA/KSC Transportation and Alternative Fuel Vehicle Programs, 100 Best Fleets’ Tom Johnson, David L. Dunn from City of Orlando Fleet and Facilities Management, and Protec Fuel’s Andrew Greenberg to discuss the benefits of adding E85 Flex Fuel to your fleet..

Finally, the Third Annual Emerald Coast Transportation Symposium will take place Nov. 12-13 at the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort in Miramar Beach, FL.  Central Florida Clean Cities Coalition Coordinator Colleen Kettles will be speaking at the symposium in a panel event on renewable and alternative fuels.  Learn more and register for the event at http://www.wfrpc.org/events/transportation-symposium.

We look forward to reporting back again soon!

Photos

Co-Director for National Clean Cities, US DOE Linda Bluestein delivers a presentation on Electric Vehicle Public and Policy Awareness at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Photo by Nick Waters.

Co-Director for National Clean Cities, US DOE Linda Bluestein delivers a presentation on Electric Vehicle Public and Policy Awareness at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL. Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, James Culp of Duke Energy describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, James Culp of Duke Energy describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL. Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, Todd Jensen of Florida Power and Light describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, Todd Jensen of Florida Power and Light describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL. Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, Bryan Coley of Gulf Power describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, Bryan Coley of Gulf Power describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL. Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, JEA’s Peter King describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, JEA’s Peter King describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL. Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, OUC’s Eva Reyes describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, OUC’s Eva Reyes describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL. Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, TECO’s Keith Gruetzmacher describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Photo by Nick Waters.

A participant in the Electric Utility Perspective Panel, TECO’s Keith Gruetzmacher describes his business’s electric vehicle and alternative fuels advancement programs at the 2015 EV Summit in Cocoa, FL. Photo by Nick Waters.

A Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Display was held on October 21, 2015 at the EV Transportation and Technology Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Participants were able to climb inside the different vehicles to learn more about the model options and which vehicle offerings best matched their business and personal needs.

A Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Display was held on October 21, 2015 at the EV Transportation and Technology Summit in Cocoa, FL. Participants were able to climb inside the different vehicles to learn more about the model options and which vehicle offerings best matched their business and personal needs.

A Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Display was held on October 21, 2015 at the EV Transportation and Technology Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Pictured here is a new 2015 VIA Motors Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV), provided by Florida Power and Light.  Many other utilities are also currently using and expanding their fleets of PEVs.  Photo by Nick Waters.

A Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Display was held on October 21, 2015 at the EV Transportation and Technology Summit in Cocoa, FL. Pictured here is a new 2015 VIA Motors Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV), provided by Florida Power and Light. Many other utilities are also currently using and expanding their fleets of PEVs. Photo by Nick Waters.

A Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Display was held on October 21, 2015 at the EV Transportation and Technology Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Pictured are a Chevy Volt and a Nissan Leaf actively charging at the Florida Solar Energy Center public PEV charging stations.  Photo by Nick Waters.

A Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Display was held on October 21, 2015 at the EV Transportation and Technology Summit in Cocoa, FL. Pictured are a Chevy Volt and a Nissan Leaf actively charging at the Florida Solar Energy Center public PEV charging stations. Photo by Nick Waters.

A Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Display was held on October 21, 2015 at the EV Transportation and Technology Summit in Cocoa, FL.  Pictured is a participating Tesla Model S vehicle.  Photo by Nick Waters.

A Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Display was held on October 21, 2015 at the EV Transportation and Technology Summit in Cocoa, FL. Pictured is a participating Tesla Model S vehicle. Photo by Nick Waters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Question of the Month: How can I improve my gas mileage while driving this winter?

October 19, 2015 by Clean Cities

Answer: Whether taking that long-awaited ski trip or just commuting to work in the frigid weather, there are several things you can do to improve your fuel economy and save money in the wintertime.

Why You Get Worse Gas Mileage When It’s Cold

Cold weather and winter driving conditions can reduce your fuel economy significantly. On particularly chilly days, when temperatures drop to 20°F or lower, you can expect to see up to a 12% hit on your fuel economy for short city trips. During very quick trips—traveling only three to four miles—your fuel economy could dip even lower (as much as 22%)!

This reduction in fuel economy is due to several factors. First of all, cold temperatures increase the time it takes your vehicle to warm the cabin, engine, drive-line fluids, and other components up to fuel-efficient operating temperatures. Cold fluids increase the friction on your engine and transmission, which can reduce fuel economy.

Let’s take a moment to address one of the main myths about driving in cold weather:

Myth: To warm up your engine and vehicle cabin in the wintertime, you should let the engine run for several minutes before driving.

Truth: Most manufacturers recommend driving off gently after about 30 seconds of idling. In fact, the engine will warm up faster when driving. Idling can use a quarter to half a gallon of fuel per hour, and even more fuel if the engine is cold or accessories like seat heaters are on.

Also keep in mind that winter gasoline blends in cold climates have slightly less energy per gallon than summer blends. This is because refineries alter the chemical makeup of gasoline to allow it to evaporate more easily in low temperatures, ensuring proper engine operation.

Aerodynamic drag is another consideration. In simple terms, cold air is denser than warm air, so when temperatures drop, wind resistance increases slightly. This requires a little more power from your engine to drive at a given speed. The effects of aerodynamic drag on fuel economy are most significant at highway speeds.

Six Tips to Cut Fuel Costs and Unnecessary Idling When Winter Hits

Winter Fuel-Saving Tips

The following tips can help you warm your car (and fingers!) more efficiently and improve your fuel economy in the winter:

  • Park in a warmer place like a garage that traps heat to keep the initial temperature of your engine and cabin higher than it would be outside in the elements.
  • Avoid idling to warm up the engine and cabin. See more information above.
  • Avoid using seat warmers more than necessary, as they require additional power.
  • Plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) owners: Pre-heat your vehicle while still plugged in. Since PEVs use battery power to provide heat to the cabin, cabin and seat heaters can drain the vehicle’s battery and reduce the overall range. If you need to warm up quickly, warm the vehicle while it’s still charging.
  • PEV owners: Use seat heaters instead of the cabin heater when able. Using seat heaters instead of the cabin heater can save energy. Seat heaters use less energy than cabin heaters and can often be more efficient at warming you up quickly in the winter.
  • Read the owner’s manual for detailed information on how your vehicle’s cabin and seat heaters work and how to use them efficiently.

 

Do you live in a place where snow and ice isn’t an issue? Check out the May Question of the Month (http://www.eereblogs.energy.gov/cleancities/post/2015/05/19/summer_fuel_economy.aspx) for year-round warm weather driving tips.

More Information

For more information on how to improve your fuel economy, please refer to the following FuelEconomy.gov tips:

·        Keeping Your Vehicle in Shape – http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/maintain.jsp

Central Florida Clean Cities September Re-Cap

October 5, 2015 by Clean Cities

Ford Smart Mobility_2September may be over soon, but we’d like to re-cap all of the exciting events Central Florida Clean Cities was able to be a part of this month.

Starting on Wed. Sept. 9, Central Florida Clean Cities representatives were invited to attend the Ford Smart Mobility Experience at Full Sail University in Winter Park, FL.  A traveling presentation, Ford’s Smart Mobility Experience provides a sneak peak at Ford’s transportation designs that revolutionize the way we move ourselves in the future.  Our favorite was a look at the electric bike concept which combined some of our best-loved features:  alternative fuels, multi-modal transport, and a new way for us to travel sustainably.

NDEW_Sept. 12_1

On Saturday, Sept. 12, we kicked off National Drive Electric Week at Valencia College in downtown Orlando.  Attendees at this event were able to check out a variety of electric vehicles and speak with the car owners to learn more about electric driving.  The event also featured a presentation period during which speakers elaborated on the distinctions of the PEV, how this alternative fuel contributes to a healthier community and environment, and what attendees can do to embrace this fun, green, and exciting vehicle market.

NDEW_Sept. 18_2On Friday, Sept. 18, Central Florida Clean Cities representatives were able to attend a Drive Electric Orlando event at the Dr. P. Phillips Performing Arts Center in downtown Orlando.  The event kicked off Enterprise’s commitment to providing electric rental cars for the nation’s number one tourist destination here in Central Florida.  Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer declared the day to be the first ever Drive Electric Orlando Day—before he was able to cruise off in a rented Chevy Volt!

 

NDEW_Sept. 19_2The Space Coast Electric Vehicle Drivers Club capped off Drive Electric Week by hosting an EV event at Satellite Beach on Saturday, Sept. 19.  35 EVs attended the event, and upwards of 120 total test rides we given to prospective EV buyers.  Of the registered attendees, EV owners collaboratively reported more than 650,000 miles between them on pure electric drive.

Finally this month, we were able to welcome a new hire, Shauna Basques, to the Central Florida Clean Cities fold.  Having worked previously on workplace charging (WPC) for the Twin Cities Clean Cities Coalition, she is excited to begin working with the Central Florida EV community to help advance adoption of alternative fuels and spread the word on workplace charging.  If you have any questions for her (or just want to say hi), contact her at sbasques@fsec.ucf.edu.

And don’t forget—Central Florida Clean Cities will be participating in more upcoming events!

On October 2, 2015, we will be celebrating the tail end of Team Sanford’s Fireball Run stint from 3-6 PM on 1st St. in Sanford, FL.  We will provide a small electric vehicle display and cheer on the team to the finish line the following day on the Florida Space Coast.

From October 14-16, the 2015 Florida Energy Summit will be held at the Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront in Jacksonville, Florida.  Presentations at the summit will focus on alternative fuels, CNG and LNG in particular.  For information and registration, please visit FloridaEnergySummit.com.

We will also assist in hosting the 2015 EV Transportation and Technology Summit at our Florida Solar Energy Center campus from Oct. 20-22 in Cocoa, FL.  For information and registration, please visit EVSummit.org.

Thank you for all of your interest and support.  We look forward to reporting back soon!

TruStar Energy Lowers Commercial Fueling Cost in Orlando by Opening Its First Public CNG Fueling Station

July 21, 2015 by Clean Cities

Company Capitalizes on Market Shift to CNG Fuel

(ORLANDO, FL) July 21, 2015 – TruStar Energy, one of the nation’s leading developers of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) fueling stations, announced today that it has opened its first TruStar Energy-branded public CNG fueling station in Orlando, Florida. Located in a heavy truck traffic corridor, the 24/7 CNG fast-fill station is capable of fueling several hundred vehicles a day and promises to deliver lower fueling cost and reduced transportation-related emissions to the
Orlando area.

“We continue to see a shift taking place in North America where more commercial vehicles are running on CNG—it’s cheaper, cleaner, quieter running, and domestically abundant and produced. As a result, the company has embarked on a strategic path to open dozens of TruStar Energy public CNG stations over the next several years—Orlando is our first,” said TruStar Energy President, Adam Comora. “Rest assured though, we will continue to provide the same outstanding design, construction, maintenance, and training services for private, public and government customers.”

From left to right:: Florida State Representative Victor Torres, Trustar President Adam Comora, US Congressman Daniel Webster, and TECO representative Keith Gruetzmacher. Backdrop is the City of Orlando CNG Refuse Truck.

From left to right:: Florida State Representative Victor Torres, Trustar President Adam Comora, US Congressman Daniel Webster, and TECO representative Keith Gruetzmacher. Backdrop is the City of Orlando CNG Refuse Truck.

“We identified Orlando as one of the best markets to build our first station, because it has a high volume of CNG vehicles and the potential to add many more,” remarked Scott Edelbach, General Manager of TruStar Energy. “Our state-of-the-art CNG station is perfectly located close to several major fleets as well as a heavy traffic corridor, making it a valuable, profitable and productive resource for businesses in the area.”

The new TruStar Energy CNG station at 8520 Exchange Drive, in the Orlando Central Park development, has four traffic lanes and two fueling islands, providing easy access for commercial vehicles and private CNG-powered consumer vehicles. Designed for future expansion, the station can accept two additional dispensers adding four more traffic lanes. The station is supplied by TECO Peoples Gas and accepts commercial fuel cards such as Comdata or Fuelman as well as all major credit cards.

“TruStar Energy’s team of experts were valuable partners in the construction of our Tampa and Ft. Meyers CNG fueling stations—those stations were built on time, on budget and there were no surprises,” said Jose Rivera, Vice President at J.J. Taylor, a Florida-based beer distributor. “The company’s investment in growing Florida’s CNG fueling infrastructure will provide fleets—like ours—the ability to extend our routes outside of our private station network—they should be applauded for undertaking this initiative.”

Fleets that run on CNG have lower exhaust and carbon emissions compared to diesel and gasoline. The average refuse truck uses 10,000 gallons of fuel each year, which is the carbon equivalent of burning 272 barrels of oil. By switching to natural gas, the carbon equivalent is cut to two barrels. Plus, natural gas engines have an average of 80 percent to 90 percent lower decibel level than diesel engines, and CNG is up to 50 percent less expensive than gasoline or diesel. CNG is also insulated from price volatility due to international conflicts and events, which in recent years has been responsible for dramatic price fluctuations for gasoline and diesel.

“By using domestically produced natural gas to fuel our transportation needs, we are not only creating and securing more American jobs, but also decreasing our dependence on foreign oil,” said Keith Gruetzmacher, Senior Manager of Alternative Fuel Vehicle Programs for TECO Peoples Gas. “TECO Peoples Gas is proud to partner with TruStar Energy to accelerate this clean, efficient and American fueling solution.”

To learn more about TruStar Energy’s CNG fueling station program, visit www.trustarenergy.com.

About TruStar Energy

TruStar Energy, a subsidiary of Fortistar, is the fastest growing compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling station owner, constructor and service provider in North America. With decades of experience in trucking and fueling, the company’s professionals are experts at designing and building CNG fueling stations that are ready on time, on budget and are swiftly profitable for their owners. And with a rapidly growing network of public stations and 24/7 service and support, we’re always there when you need us.

TruStar Energy puts fleet owners in the driver’s seat by offering best-in-class, realistic and affordable options to meet a full range of fueling needs. For additional information, please visit www.trustarenergy.com and follow us on LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook.

TruStar Energy: True Partnership. For a Change.
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TruStar Energy Media Contact:
Andy Beck
Makovsky
abeck@makovsky.com
202-587-5634

 

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