SPRINGFIELD, IL – Building on efforts to help support Illinois’ farmers and to expand the use of clean and renewable energy, Governor Rod Blagojevich announced a record use of biofuels and a dramatic increase of flexible-fuel vehicles (FFVs) in the State’s motor vehicle fleet. Since April 2005, in response to a Governor’s Executive Order directing state agencies and employees to use biofuels, agencies have used more than 1 million gallons of E-85 and biodiesel to fuel their cars and trucks.

Signed on April 12, 2004, Executive Order 7 directed state agencies and employees to use biofuels whenever possible and state purchasing experts to prioritize FFVs in fleet-vehicle purchases. When the Executive Order was signed, there were 25 stations; today, there are about 130. Additionally, 77 percent of all fleet vehicles purchased since the governor signed the Executive Order have been FFVs.

The Illinois Department of Central Management Services (CMS) procures both fuel and vehicles for Illinois government agencies. FFVs in the state’s motor-vehicle fleet can use E-85 — the advanced hybrid of ethanol composed of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline. Biodiesel — made from soybeans — is predominately used in Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) trucks for road construction, clearing, and maintenance.

As a result of this Executive Order, an unprecedented amount of biofuels were consumed, both at gas stations throughout the state and at state-operated fueling stations. Since April 2005, when the State started tracking use of renewable fuels:
  • State agencies used 122,441 gallons of E-85, with a monthly average of more than 8,100 gallons.
  • State agencies used 906,341 gallons of biodiesel fuel, or more than 60,000 gallons per month.

    Since the Executive Order was signed, state government has prioritized the purchase of FFVs:

  • More than 400 of the 700 vehicles state agencies purchased last year were FFVs.
  • As a result, 1,944 vehicles — 16 percent of the State’s 12,100-vehicle fleet — can now run on E-85.

    Blagojevich’s commitment to biofuels and flexible-fuel vehicles has made Illinois government a national leader, as recently recognized by Automotive Fleet magazine, for operating the largest E-85 passenger fleet in Illinois, and the 18th largest flexible-fuel fleet in the country. Additionally, last fall the National Conference of State Fleet Administrators (NCSFA) presented the state with the 2005 Honda Environmental Leadership Award, which recognized outstanding achievement of improving environmental quality through fleet management.