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Live Streaming of Strategic Planning Meeting

The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Clean Cities program will hold a meeting in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, February 25th, 2015, to elicit feedback in developing the Clean Cities Program's five year strategic plan. The meeting will identify strategic opportunities to increase the deployment of alternative fuel vehicles and to employ emissions-reducing technologies, and will rely on extensive research and the participation of Clean Cities stakeholders, national laboratory experts, industry experts, and partner organizations.  Louisiana Clean Fuel’s Executive Director, Ann Shaneyfelt, and Board President, Matt Sutherland, will be attending this meeting as the coalition’s representatives.

Those who are unable to attend in person are invited to watch sessions of the meeting online via live streaming. Online streaming of the meeting will be at this link:

http://www.ustream.tv/channel/u-s-department-of-energy-clean-cities-strategic-plan-meeting.

DOE suggests logging on to the live streaming prior to the meeting to ensure that all necessary software is installed on your computer. Participants via live streaming will need computer speakers to listen to the meeting; there is no separate call-in number.

Here is a list of sessions that will be streamed:

  •          Introduction and Plenary Sessions – 9:00 AM – 11:30 AM EST
  •          Breakout A: Natural Gas:  12:30 PM – 1:50 PM EST
  •          Breakout D: Plug-In Electric Vehicles and Hybrid Electric Vehicles: 2:00          – 3:20 PM    EST
  •          Summary, Discussion and Next Steps: 3:20 – 4:00 PM EST 

We look forward to an insightful, productive day that will shape Clean Cities' next five years of reducing our dependence on petroleum in the transportation sector. Please contact Marcy Rood-Werpy at mroodwerpy@anl.gov if you have any questions.

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EERE 2015 Vehicle Buyer's Guide Available

Vehicle Buyer's Guide Available 

Annual guide helps you compare and evaluate alternative fuel vehicles to make sound purchasing decisions.

The Clean Cities 2015 Vehicle Buyer's Guide is now available online and for order at no charge through the EERE Publication and Product Library. Consumers and fleet managers have relied on the annual guide for years as a comprehensive and unbiased source of information for evaluating alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) options. The 2015 version promises to meet, if not exceed, that tradition.

Today, hundreds of light-duty AFV and advanced technology vehicle models can be purchased. For example, the 2015 model year features nearly 200 AFV and hybrid electric vehicle models, including more than 80 flex-fuel vehicles. This guide provides model-specific information such as vehicle specifications, manufacturer suggested retail price, fuel economy, energy impact, and emissions. Drivers can use the information to identify options, compare vehicles, and make more informed purchase decisions.

Of particular importance to fleet managers, AFVs not only reduce petroleum use and save on fuel costs but help meet federal, state, and municipal requirements for reducing carbon. In fact, there are now approximately 20 million light-duty AFVs on American roads.

For those who prefer to make vehicle evaluations and comparisons online, the Alternative Fuel and Advanced Vehicle Searchtool on the Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) is convenient and interactive. The database includes medium- and heavy-duty vehicles as well. For a guide specific to medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, download the Clean Cities Guide to Alternative Fuel and Advanced Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicles or order a copy through the EERE Publication and Product Library.

New AFV offerings roll out continuously, and neither the documents nor the database are absolutely inclusive. If you are aware of a new offering or model change, please alert the Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team so we can update the information.

For more information:
Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team
technicalresponse@icfi.com
800-254-6735

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TRS Question of the Month: What were the trends related to state laws and incentives enacted in 2014?

Question of the Month: What were the trends related to state laws and incentives enacted in 2014?

Answer: In 2014, state legislatures and agencies developed a variety of incentives, laws, and regulations that support the use of alternative fuels, advanced vehicles, and other strategies that align with Clean Cities' mission to cut the amount of petroleum used in transportation. As compared to 2013, however, the number of newly adopted state laws and incentives decreased, possibly indicating the effectiveness of existing state programs and a maturing alternative fuels market. In addition, several states worked to fine-tune existing programs this past year, in an effort to find the best market penetration strategy.

The majority of state actions across all alternative fuel types in 2014 involved new tax-related incentives and fuel tax regulations. Specific alternative fuels displayed their own trends as well. Laws and incentives related to the following vehicle categories showed particularly notable trends:

Plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs), including both all-electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, and the associated charging infrastructure were the most popular alternative fuel technologies that received attention in the form of new state laws and incentives in 2014. States worked to streamline many aspects of PEV ownership, including allowing direct purchase of PEVs from a manufacturer, modifying rebates and incentives for electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE), and allowing EVSE at previously restricted locations, such as state facilities and leased properties. A few states initiated studies to determine how to assess PEV owners a supplemental fee in lieu of the gasoline tax they would no longer be paying. Utilities continued to provide new incentives in 2014, including electricity rate discounts for customers using EVSE.

Natural gas vehicles (NGVs) continued to draw significant consideration in 2014, particularly in those states following the national trend of basing a compressed natural gas (CNG) motor fuel tax on the favorable gasoline gallon equivalent conversion. The NGV market and consumers will also benefit from grants, weight exemptions, fuel-training programs, and fleet requirements enacted in the last year.

The Alternative Fuels Data Center’s (AFDC) State Alternative Fuel and Advanced Vehicle Laws and Incentives: 2014 Year in Review provides a further synopsis of incentives and laws enacted in 2014 and is available at http://www.afdc.energy.gov/bulletins/2014_01_15_Year_In_Review.html.

In addition, the AFDC Laws & Incentives website provides a searchable database to identify and view relevant state laws and incentives by fuel type, as well as by variety of incentive or regulation. As legislative and gubernatorial actions occur, follow the AFDC website for updates at http://www.afdc.energy.gov/laws. This database may be particularly useful in the states in which the 2014 elections changed control of the legislative or executive branches. In addition, as the 2014 tax filing deadline approaches, the Laws & Incentives website is a valuable resource for basic information regarding new or expiring state and federal tax credits.

As new trends and issues emerge from legislation, policy bulletins are posted to the AFDCTechnology and Policy Bulletins page at http://www.afdc.energy.gov/technology_bulletins.html. You may submit new or updated state laws and incentives, and suggestions for policy bulletin topics, by emailing the TRS directly at technicalresponse@icfi.com.

 

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Indianapolis CNG Refuse Truck Fire Update

The Clean Vehicle Education Foundation (CVEF) has issued an update to its ongoing investigation of the Indianapolis CNG refuse truck fire. The update contains a review of the incident, as well as safety recommendations for drivers and first responders faced with a CNG vehicle fire.

 

Indianapolis CNG Refuse Truck Fire Update

On January 27, 2015, two CNG cylinders ruptured while firefighters in Indianapolis, Indiana were fighting a refuse truck fire that appears to have started in the truck’s hopper.  The CNG cylinders on this truck were located in the area above the hopper.   While the investigation is far from complete, the Clean Vehicle Education Foundation (CVEF) wishes to alert operators of CNG vehicles and first responders to some important facts.

A common procedure in such trash fires is to dump the load so that it can be extinguished on the pavement.  This was not done in the Indianapolis incident, but it should always be considered wherever possible.

The fire in the trash hopper exposed the CNG fuel system mounted above the hopper roof to intense heat.  Prolonged, direct, and intense heat can damage the structural integrity of CNG cylinders, ultimately resulting in a rupture if pressure is not relieved.   

The fuel system was equipped with pressure relief devices (PRDs) mounted at both ends of each cylinder.  The PRDs are designed to relieve pressure in CNG containers in the event of a fire threat.   The fire continued for more than 30 minutes from initial detection prior to a cylinder rupture.  There is no evidence so far that these temperature-activated devices experienced sufficient heat input to trigger and relieve the gas pressure.  The PRDs were designed and qualified in accordance with the ANSI PRD1 standard for CNG PRDs. 

It has been recognized that PRDs cannot always activate in time to prevent any chance of a cylinder rupture in a fire.  ANSI PRD1 contains the following quote from the older CGA S-1.1 standard for industrial gas PRDs.

CGA S-1.1, Pressure Relief Device Standards Part 1-Cylinders for Compressed Gases states: “relief devices may not prevent burst of a cylinder under all conditions of fire exposure. When the heat transferred to the cylinder is localized, intensive, and remote to the relief device, or when the fire builds rapidly, such as in an explosion, and is of very high intensity, the cylinder can weaken sufficiently to rupture before the relief device operates, or while it is operating.”

CNG cylinders are almost always equipped with protective covers that make it difficult to spray water directly on the cylinders. Direct or indirect water sprayed on the system in Indianapolis may have kept the PRDs below their intended trigger temperature.  Another recent and very similar refuse truck fire resulted in relief of pressure through the PRDs as intended, but in that case the firefighters cleared the area and allowed the truck to burn without attempting to cool the cylinder package, possibly changing the outcome.

Recommendations:

  • Drivers and first responders should receive specific training for handling a CNG vehicle fire.
  • If the burning cargo can be dumped or a burning trailer can be disconnected, that should be done as soon as the fire department is summoned.
  • Since in most CNG vehicle fires it is too late to save the vehicle by the time the cylinders are threatened, fire fighters should clear a safe perimeter and not try to approach the vehicle to fight a fire that is threatening the cylinders unless there are injured people to evacuate.
  • The cylinder enclosure should not be sprayed with water unless the PRDs will not be cooled or the gas has already been vented through PRDs.
  • Based on previous fires, firefighters should not approach a burning CNG vehicle directly from either end or side.  They should approach on about a 45-degree angle.
  • Specific instructions should be obtained from the vehicle manufacturer, upfitter, or converter when dealing with the aftermath of a CNG vehicle fire.  Some of the cylinders may have been relieved during the fire but others might remain full and will require following special procedures to empty them.

The Clean Vehicle Education Foundation will participate in the ongoing investigation and report on additional findings and recommendations as needed.  Contact John Dimmick at jdimmick.cvef@gmail.com or Doug Horne at dbhorne1@gmail.com if you have any questions.

The Clean Vehicle Education Foundation makes great effort to provide secure, accurate and complete information. However, portions of the information contained in this document may be incorrect or not current. Any errors or omissions should be reported to dbhorne@cleanvehicle.org for investigation. The Clean Vehicle Education Foundation, it's officers, employees or agents shall not be liable for damages or losses of any kind arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of the information provided herein, including but not limited to, damages or losses caused by reliance upon the accuracy or timeliness of any such information, or damages incurred from the viewing, distributing, or copying of those materials.  The information provided in this document is provided "as is." No warranty of any kind, implied, expressed, or statutory, including but not limited to the warranties of non-infringement of third party rights, title, merchantability, or fitness for a particular purpose, is given with respect to the contents of this document.

Thank you to NGV America for sharing this vital information.

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DOE Launches FREE ONLINE Emergency Response Hydrogen Training Resource

ENERGY.GOV

The Energy Department's Fuel Cell Technologies Office (FCTO) announces the launch of a new, free, online national hydrogen safety training resource for emergency responders. Developed by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and the California Fuel Cell Partnership, the resource provides a single repository of credible and reliable information related to hydrogen and fuel cells that is current and accurate and eliminates duplicative efforts among various training programs. This approach will enable government and private training organizations nationwide to develop their own training programs with consistent hydrogen and fuel cells content and standards.DOE Launches Emergency Response Hydrogen Training Resource

A properly trained first responder community is critical to the successful introduction of hydrogen fuel cell applications like fuel cell electric vehicles and fuel cell powered material handling equipment and emergency backup power. Using this national emergency response hydrogen training resource, hydrogen and fuel cell-related training can be delivered locally by first responder trainers to serve missions to protect life and preserve property, while maintaining a consistent source of accurate information and current knowledge. These free training materials are adaptable to the specific needs of first responders and training organizations and are meant to complement the extensive training programs already in place.

There will be a webinar on March 24, 2015, to provide additional details about the emergency response hydrogen training resource. Register for the webinar.

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Clean Cities TRS Question of the Month: Using the Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) Station Locator

Question of the Month: How can I search for, update, and add new alternative fueling station information using the Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) Station Locator?

Answer: The Alternative Fueling Station Locator (http://www.afdc.energy.gov/locator/stations/) is the most used tool on the AFDC and was recently improved to include new options that may change the way users search for and update station information. You can now filter search results by several fuel-specific fields, such as connector type for electric vehicle charging and fill pressure for natural gas fueling. Read on for more details and information on how to update an existing station or add a new station to the Station Locator.

Searching for Alternative Fueling Stations

Previously, Station Locator users could select “more search options” to look for stations with a certain status/access type (e.g., existing, planned, or private), owner type, payment methods, and electric charger types (e.g., Level 2, DC fast charge). The Station Locator now allows users to search filter by fuel-specific fields corresponding to each alternative fuel. First, select a specific fuel type from the “All Fuels” drop-down menu, and then click on “more search options” to choose from the following filters:

  • Compressed Natural Gas (CNG)
    • Fill type – the type of dispensing capability available at the station (e.g., fast-fill, time-fill)
    • Vehicle accessibility – the maximum vehicle size that can physically access the CNG fueling station (e.g., light-, medium-, heavy-duty vehicles)
    • Fill pressure – the pounds per square inch (PSI) pressure available at the station (e.g., 2400, 3000, 3600)
  • Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE)
    • Charger type – the type of electric chargers available at the station (e.g., Level 1, Level 2, DC Fast, Legacy chargers)
    • Connectors and outlets – the type of outlets (e.g., NEMA 14-50, NEMA 5-15, NEMA 5-20) and connectors  (e.g., J1772, CHAdeMO, J1772 Combo, Tesla) available for charging
    • Networks – the name of the EVSE network
  •  Ethanol (E85)
    • Mid-level blend availability – stations that provide mid-level ethanol blends, such as E30
  • Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG)
    • Vehicle accessibility – the maximum vehicle size that can physically access the LNG fueling station (e.g., light-, medium-, heavy-duty vehicles)
  •  Propane (LPG)
    • Vehicle-specific service – stations that cater to propane vehicles by offering a vehicle fuel-specific price and accept credit cards

 

Updating Station Information

Once you have located a station of interest, click on the station pinpoint on the map and select “More details” for even more information about the station. If you would like to report updates to the station, such as additional fuel types available, click on “Report a change” in the top right corner of the station details page. Users will receive an email confirmation after reporting updates, and the submission goes directly to the Clean Cities Technical Response Service (TRS) for review and verification. Anyone reporting an update should expect the TRS to contact you or a station point of contact before the changes will appear on the Station Locator.

Adding New Fueling Stations

If you have searched the Station Locator, including private and planned stations, and would like to report one that is not listed, use the New Station Submission form (http://www.afdc.energy.gov/locator/stations/places/new). You can navigate to this form by clicking “Submit New Station” in the top right corner of the Station Locator map. Please provide as much detail as possible in the submission form, and use the “Comments” section as needed to include additional information. As with the station update process mentioned above, you will receive an automated email confirmation and the TRS will likely contact you to verify information before adding the station to the Station Locator. 

Alternatively, you may submit new or updated station information by emailing the TRS directly at technicalresponse@icfi.com. If you have several new stations or updates to submit, this method is preferred, as the TRS can provide you with an Excel spreadsheet template.

For more information on how fueling stations are maintained and updated in the Station Locator, see the AFDC About the Alternative Fueling Station Data page (http://www.afdc.energy.gov/fuels/data_methods_stations.html). 

Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team
technicalresponse@icfi.com
800-254-6735

 

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Join LCF at the ACT Expo May 4-7th! Discounts available for general LCF members and fleet members!

ACT Expo | May 4-7, 2015 | Dallas, TX | The Largest Clean Fleet Event

Join Clean Cities at the                                    

 

 Fleet*
Coalition
Member

 

General
Coalition
Member

$345
Use code CCFLEET

  Includes:
Conference Pass
Expo Hall
Networking Events
Post-Event Resources

$645
Use code CCMEMBER

  Includes:
Conference Pass
Expo Hall
Networking Events
Post-Event Resource

#1 clean fleet event!

ACT Expo 2015 will gather 3500+ clean transportation stakeholders in Dallas. Will you be among them?

 

Your 2015 ACT Expo registration includes:

 Conference Pass
During 4 days of educational sessions, learn why major fleet operators believe that alternative fuels and efficiency technologies still make good business sense despite declining petroleum prices.View Agenda »

 

 Expo Hall 
With 200+ exhibitors, attendees can explore the wide range of alternative fuel and clean vehicle technology solutions. Take advantage of this one-stop clean transportation shop! View Expo Hall & Exhibitor Listing »

 

 Catered Networking Events
Connect with 3,500+ attendees at hosted events, including the entertainment-packed welcome reception hosted by PERC, and the Expo Hall grand opening reception.

 

 Post-Event Resources
Access 100+ speaker presentations after ACT Expo, ensuring you don’t miss any of the exciting programming offered onsite in Dallas. Continue your learning year-round!

"ACT Expo is a one-stop shop for fleet managers to come and look at everything that's offered so we can make sound business decisions on alternative fuels for our fleets." Uhaul

*ACT Expo reserves the right to review and approve all Fleet registrations. To qualify, you must oversee a fleet of five or more vehicles and be directly responsible for operations, maintenance, and/or procurement of this fleet. Sales and business development positions do not qualify.




ACT Expo | May 4-7, 2015 | Dallas, TX | The Largest Clean Fleet Event

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