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Call to Action for a Truly Sustainable Renewable Future
August 8, 2013 – 5:07 pm | No Comment

-Include high octane/high ethanol Regular Grade fuel in EPA Tier 3 regulations.
-Use a dedicated, self-reducing non-renewable carbon user fee to fund renewable energy R&D.
-Start an Apollo-type program to bring New Ideas to sustainable biofuel and …

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Home » Opinions, Policy, Sustainability, Washington

Eleven Years After Bill, City Fleets in Washington State are Nowhere Near Abandoning Gas-Powered Vehicles

Submitted by on June 12, 2018 – 1:52 pmNo Comment

by Nicholas Deshais (The Spokesman-Review/GovTech)  Seattle has the most alternative-fuel vehicles in its municipal fleet. But its fleet is supposed to be 100 percent alternative.  —  … In 2007, Washington state Gov. Chris Gregoire signed a law that said cities, counties and other local governments and entities had to switch their vehicle fleets to run solely on electricity or biofuel by June 2018.

Math tells us that about one-tenth of 1 percent of the fleet meets the letter of the law. Or in other words, statistically insignificant.

The city (Spokane), for instance, does only have one electric vehicle, it’s true. But it also has seven hybrids, which run interchangeably on gas and electricity. And it has 32 garbage trucks that run on compressed natural gas, which creates less pollution and is more efficient than fossil fuels. The city anticipates the entire 100-strong fleet of garbage trucks will run on CNG by 2023.

That may be the case, but other Washington cities show more progress in fleet electrification than Spokane. Seattle’s 178 vehicles, out of a total of 3,410, leads the pack by far. 

And as Feist (Marlene Feist, the director of strategic development for the city’s public works and utilities department) suggested, vehicles that run on natural gas count under the law, which includes “an allowance for substitution of natural gas and propane for electricity or biodiesel not authorized within the statute.” The report acknowledges the allowance, but didn’t count the CNG vehicles.

The report shows what’s at stake. Vehicle emissions are the largest source of air pollution, and more than 40 percent of all carbon emissions in Washington state came from tailpipes. In 2016, Seattle burned through more than 2.2 million gallons of gas while Spokane combusted 902,000 gallons.  READ MORE

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