Projected fuel prices for transportation fuels (Graphic: Business Wire)

Projected fuel prices for transportation fuels (Graphic: Business Wire)

- A new report from a Washington, D.C. energy policy group urges the federal government to begin allocating its $150 billion budget for transport services to carriers that fuel their fleets on domestically produced natural gas, electricity, and biofuels.

The report, by the non-profit American Clean Skies Foundation (ACSF), says a switch of just 20% of the U.S. government’s business to freight and package carriers using alternative fuels would lead to taxpayer savings of up to $7 billion annually and approximately $25 billion by 2025 (assuming a gradual fuel shift, beginning in 2015). Much of the savings is attributable to reduced fuel costs because major alternatives, such as compressed natural gas (CNG), cost less per gallon than petroleum-based fuels.

The report -- Oil Shift: The Case for Switching Federal Transportation Spending to Alternative Fuel Vehicles -- finds that shifting federal transportation contracts to vans and trucks running on alternative fuels could reduce oil imports by billions of gallons annually; cut greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution by more than 20 million metric tons a year; and stimulate the nationwide introduction of tens of thousands of new alternative-fuel vehicles.

“Most people are probably unaware that the freight services which are used by the government and major product suppliers provide a 30 times larger opportunity for oil savings and emissions reductions than the cars and trucks that the government owns itself,” said Warren Lavey, co-author of the report and ACSF’s Senior Regulatory Counsel.

The report recommends that Washington apply the same measurement and reporting tools developed by federal agencies over the last two decades to reduce petroleum use and emissions associated with the government’s own transportation fleet.

For the full report, click here.