Photo courtesy of Forest Preserve District of DuPage County.

Photo courtesy of Forest Preserve District of DuPage County.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded a $23,387 grant to the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County (Ill.) to convert five 2016 Ford light-duty trucks to run on compressed natural gas (CNG). The bi-fuel CNG trucks will be used to haul materials, equipment, and staff to and from worksites and clear roadways during the winter months.

“The district wants to convert these vehicles to fulfill its commitment to sustainability from an organizational and environmental perspective by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and petroleum-based fuel dependency, while serving as an example of alternative-fuel use,” Michael Webster, CAFM, district fleet manager, stated in a release.

According to Webster, 159 of the district’s 180 on-road vehicles, and 172 of 800 off-road units, are alternative-fuel vehicles. These vehicles include hybrid electric cars and vehicles that run on propane autogas, compressed natural gas (CNG), ethanol, and biodiesel.

The district owns and manages more than 60 forest preserves. In addition to greening its own fleet, the district also helps area municipalities reduce their greenhouse emissions by allowing them to use the district’s alternative-fuel station, the only fuel site in Illinois with four unique alternative fuels.