BIRMINGHAM, AL – The City of Birmingham will lease 70 natural gas-fueled garbage and rubbish trucks and apply for a $5 million federal grant to build a compressed natural gas (CNG) station, according to the Birmingham News. Officials from Energen and Alagasco will help seek the $5 million grant for a CNG station.
The City expects to make the grant application at the end of May and have a response by September.
The new trucks will make up the largest fleet of natural gas-fueled refuse and brush trucks in the Southeast, Mayor Larry Langford said April 27. The vehicles are expected to save more than 5,200 barrels of oil a year.
The City Council in October approved a plan to lease all vehicles in the city fleet. Bob Rainey, director of fleet management, has said 70 percent of the 2,200 vehicles in the city's fleet needed replacing. That figure included police cars, fire trucks, and garbage trucks.
City officials said it would cost $45 million to buy new vehicles, but $6.5 million a year to lease them. At the end of the leases, the City has the option to buy the vehicles or enter into a new contract.
Langford said the City will begin seeking bids on the leased vehicles, and the new vehicles will arrive later this year.