Natural Gas – Conversions, Vehicles and Technology

Kentucky Green Fleets, Including UPS & Waste Management, Honored

December 27, 2011

LOUISVILLE, KY -- The Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition winter meeting included an awards ceremony honoring the environmental performance of fleets participating in the group’s voluntary Green Fleets of the Bluegrass program

Len Dunman of Mercer Transportation receives a Green Fleets of the Bluegrass award from KCFC President Tracy Thurman.
Len Dunman of Mercer Transportation receives a Green Fleets of the Bluegrass award from KCFC President Tracy Thurman.

The honored fleets were named “pioneer” members of the program, in recognition of their environmental achievements in seven areas – vehicles, fuel, maintenance, operation, partnerships, strategy and transparency. Here are the winners and a summary of their achievements:

  • UPS' Louisville operations use a variety of alternative fuels. More than 40 percent of the off-road fleet uses electricity, propane, and B5 biodiesel. In addition, UPS has 25 hybrid electric delivery trucks on the road in Kentucky. UPS has a corporate-level strategy to reduce environmental impact and increase fleet efficiency, and has been recognized by the EPA as an Outstanding Environmental Leader in 2010 as well as a National Partner by US DOE Clean Cities. UPS is an active member of the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition, with Bill Jacob providing leadership as 2012 KCFC president. Jacob also served on the 2011 KCFC Board of Directors.
  • Waste Management (WM) of Kentucky's sustainability strategy includes the opening of its first two compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling stations in Kentucky. They will be opened in Louisville in early 2012. Over 70 percent of refuse collection trucks will operate on CNG. WM has begun enhancing its corporate environmental initiative. This effort includes providing leadership on local environmental and economic initiatives such as the Bluegrass Economic Advancement Project (BEAM). As a new member of the Kentucky Clean Fuel Coalition, WM will serve on the 2012 KCFC Board of Directors.
Waste Management (WM) of Kentucky's sustainability strategy includes the opening of its first two compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling stations in Kentucky. They will be opened in Louisville in early 2012. Over 70 percent of refuse collection trucks will operate on CNG. WM has begun enhancing its corporate environmental initiative. This effort includes providing leadership on local environmental and economic initiatives such as the Bluegrass Economic Advancement Project (BEAM). As a new member of the Kentucky Clean Fuel Coalition, WM will serve on the 2012 KCFC Board of Directors.
  • Mercer Transportation's diesel fleet of over 2,000 trucks are driven under strict speed-control guidelines as well as anti-idling guidance. Mercer is one of the first Urban Truck Electrification sites in the country, and the company reduces idling by supplying 40 electric plug-in spaces for semi trucks. Mercer is an EPA SmartWay Partner and is an active member of the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition, serving on the 2011 and 2012 KCFC Board of Directors.
  • The Breathitt Co. Board of Education has eight Thomas Built Hybrid 66 passenger school buses with the Eaton electric system, and has ordered four more. Fuel efficiency has increased from 6.2 miles per gallon to 8.8 miles per gallon in the hybrid buses. Breathitt continues to improve driving and route efficiency, and places new hybrids on varying routes to gather comparative data within its own fleet. Efforts save fuel and school district money.
  • The Jefferson County Public School (JCPS) District is on track to have the largest hybrid electric school bus fleet in the United States. JCPS utilizes 32 hybrid electric buses as part of its approximately 1,200 bus fleet, and has 18 more on order. JCPS has seen significant improvement in fuel economy from the hybrid bus project. All diesel buses use a B2 biodiesel blend, and other vehicles requiring regular fuel use a reformulated gasoline of 5 percent alcohol. JCPS partners with the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition and Louisville's Partnership for a Green City.
  • The Kentucky Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) operates a 261-vehicle fleet that includes 20 hybrid vehicles. As part of its green fleet efforts, DEP has adopted fleet efficiency standards outlined in the governor's 2007 energy plan, and now aims for 30-percent improvement in the fleet fuel economy by 2015 and a 50-percent improvement by 2025. Efforts include downsizing to the smallest and most fuel efficient class possible for replacement vehicles as well as taking advantage of hybrid efficiencies. In addition to active membership in the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition, DEP is also working to promote fleet efficiencies among other state departments across Kentucky. 
  • The Division of Fleet Management, a division of the Kentucky Finance and Administration Cabinet, has adopted the governor's charge to raise fleet fuel economy 30 percent by 2015 and 50 percent by 2025. Almost a quarter of the division's 4,600 vehicle fleet is composed of either hybrid vehicles or vehicles using E85 or biodiesel. The Division of Fleet Management is a member of the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition.
  • Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government (LFUCG) operates a municipal fleet that includes over 175 vehicles using B5 biodiesel and 73 hybrid vehicles. In addition, diesel particulate filters have been installed on older vehicles to improve air quality. Many of these vehicles are used to provide public services including public safety and first response, waste removal, and street sweeping. The city's draft strategic plan, "Empower Lexington," seeks to reduce energy use by 1 percent every year, and includes efforts to promote alternative vehicle technologies and efficient vehicles and driving. LFUCG is an active member of the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition, with Tracey Thurman providing leadership in 2011 as KCFC’s president. Thurman also will serve as a member of the 2012 KCFC Board of Directors.
  • The Louisville Regional Airport Authority's ground fleet operation has made great strides in its use of alternative fuels. About a quarter of the ground vehicles used in support of airline operations use B5 biodiesel. All vehicles are subject to anti-idling requirements. An Energy Reduction Working Group meets monthly to identify fuel savings opportunities. The Louisville Regional Airport Authority is a member of the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition.
  • Mammoth Cave National Park (MCNP) is the first national park in the country to use 100-percent alternative fuels and advanced technologies in its fleet. Biodiesel is used with all heavy-duty equipment, including the Green River ferry boats. Low-speed electric vehicles are utilized by hotel staff and camping ground security, and all buses use propane. Over 90 percent of the vehicles used by Mammoth Cave NP run on either E10 or E85. Mammoth Cave NP partners with concessionaire Forever Resorts to enable both park and hotel vehicles to share the park's refueling station. MCNP is a member of the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition.
  • Murray State University makes extensive use of alternative fuels and advanced technology vehicles, with 29 percent of its 280 vehicle fleet using E85, E10 or B20 biodiesel. Use of alternative fuel accounts for over 90 percent of the fuel used in flex-fuel vehicles. In addition, Murray State uses four GEM electric vehicles, further reducing the petroleum used by its fleet. Murray State University is an active member of the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition, serving on the 2011 and 2012 KCFC Board of Directors.
  • Transit Authority of River City (TARC) is also transitioning its fleet to cleaner-burning  fuel. Currently, 10 percent of TARC's bus fleet is operating on hybrid diesel, increasing to 15 percent in 2012. The buses, purchased through a federal grant, service the greater Louisville area and reduce fuel consumption and air pollution. In pursuit of improved fleet performance, TARC partners with the American Public Transportation Association and the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition.

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