Green Fleet

Seattle Sets Goal to Reduce Fleet Petroleum Fuel Use by 1 Million Gallons by 2020

May 09, 2013

Seattle's Mayor Mike McGinn announced the City's goal of reducing petroleum fuel use by 1 million gallons by 2020. Photo courtesy City of Seattle.
Seattle's Mayor Mike McGinn announced the City's goal of reducing petroleum fuel use by 1 million gallons by 2020. Photo courtesy City of Seattle.

The City of Seattle’s Mayor Mike McGinn has directed the City’s Department of Finance and Administrative Services (FAS) to update work toward a goal of reducing the City’s fleet’s petroleum use by 1 million gallons by 2020. This would be a 42% reduction in overall petroleum-based fuel use when using the amount of fuel the City’s fleet used in 2012 as the baseline.

McGinn said FAS will update its original 2007 Clean and Green Fleet Action Plan to focus on specific ways to reduce fuel use. These methods include using automatic vehicle locators (AVL), purchasing alternative-fuel vehicles, and investing in developing expanded electric vehicle infrastructure, and using biodiesel made with waste vegetable oil at the City’s three primary fueling sites.

For telematics, the City wants to use them to plan routes, reduce idling, and optimize vehicle speeds. For alternative-fuel vehicle purchases, the City plans to focus on all-electric versions of passenger vehicles, vehicles for parking enforcement, and light-duty trucks. The City also plans to purchase hybrid-electric heavy-duty trucks and large work vans. In terms of enhancing the City’s EV infrastructure, McGinn said the City will install more EV chargers in strategic locations in and around Seattle.

For 2014, McGinn said he will propose a 2014 budget adjustment to cover the costs of achieving the previously mentioned goals by 2010. This will include funding for 36 EVs to replace petroleum-fueled vehicles in 2014; funding to install and maintain 200 AVLs; money for the new charging stations and to prepare fuel tanks for biodiesel use; and funds for a new Green Fleet Coordinator position. This individual will be responsible for implementing the new Green Fleet Action Plan. McGinn said actual budget amounts will be worked out during the 2014 budget process.

The City has already made progress toward transitioning its fleet away from petroleum fuels. Seattle has operated 43 all-electric Nissan LEAF vehicles since 2011. This has reduced petroleum fuel consumption by more than 5,000 gallons and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 54 tons. In 1991, the City built a regional compressed natural gas fueling station on City-owned property, which led to the purchase of CNG fleet vehicles. The City was also recognized as the No. 1 Government Green Fleet and as the No. 1 Fleet as part of the 100 Best Fleets program in 2012.

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