Biodiesel and Ethanol

Grant Will Allow City Vehicles to Burn E-85

October 22, 2008

GOODYEAR, AZ – Goodyear’s vehicle fleet can finally go green. The city is looking to buy a special pump and storage tank to fill up its flex-fuel vehicles after receiving a $91,000 grant, according to www.azcentral.com.

The Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community grant comes from the tribe’s casino revenues. Under an agreement with the state, Arizona tribes award gaming-funded grants to cities.

About one-quarter of Goodyear’s nearly 370 vehicles can run on unleaded gasoline or E-85, a cleaner-burning, ethanol-gasoline mix. The vehicles switch easily between gas and E-85, using one tank for both fuels.

There are just 23 retail and private E-85 stations in the state, according to AAA Arizona. There are at least three in the Valley with one each in Mesa, Scottsdale, and downtown Phoenix.

Goodyear fleet superintendent Richard Sweepe said the city has been buying flex-fuel vehicles for about four years. But the city never had a way to fill them with E-85. He said each flex-fuel vehicle cost about $1,000 more than normal and the city tended to buy them with an eye on the environment.

Eighty-five of the city’s 103-vehicle flex-fuel fleet is for the Goodyear Police Department, one of the city’s largest fuel consumers. There is no specific timeline for adding the E-85 equipment at one of the city’s three fueling stations. The city could receive the grant money as early as November.

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