The City of Albuquerque, N.M., has added its first-ever electric vehicles (EVs) to the city fleet, and Mayor Tim Keller has signed an executive instruction to shift all eligible vehicles to electric, hybrid, and alternative low-emission fuels, the city announced.

“Any realistic effort to fight climate change has to include steps to reduce the impact of vehicles on our air quality and public health. Technology of electric, hybrid, and alternative-fuel vehicles has steadily improved, and the time has come to turn the page on gas-powered cars and trucks. And as the electric grid becomes solarized, each vehicle replaced with electric will eliminate all future emissions for that vehicle, forever,” Mayor Keller stated in a release.

The city is planning to transition 63% of its eligible light-duty vehicles to electric or hybrid power as part of the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ American Climate Cities Challenge by transitioning 50 vehicles by the end of 2020.

Mayor Keller’s executive instruction will add to that commitment, taking additional eligible gas-powered vehicles off the road as they come up for replacement or when new vehicles are purchased. The result will be a city fleet in which every eligible gas vehicle is replaced by a low- or no-emission vehicle, which will reduce the city’s carbon emissions, save taxpayer money spent on fuel, improve Albuquerque’s air quality and public health outcomes, and reduce the city’s reliance on fossil fuels, according to the release.

Eligible vehicles are defined as non-public-safety fleet vehicles that have a low- or no-emissions alternative and whose functional purpose allows for incorporation of the alternative. As EV technology and charging station infrastructure improves, the number of eligible vehicles in the fleet will continue to increase.

The city is using funding from electricity provider PNM and the Volkswagen settlement to help pay for the vehicles, KRQE reported.

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