Louisiana Clean Fuels Coordinator, Ann Vail, Inducted into Clean Cities Hall of Fame

    U.S. Department of Energy Honors Louisiana Leader for Advancing Affordable, Domestic Fuels and Technologies in Transportation

    BATON ROUGE – The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) honored Louisiana Clean Fuels Coordinator Ann Vail for her dedication and outstanding accomplishments in working to advance alternative fuels and advanced vehicles in transportation. DOE’s National Clean Cities Director Dennis Smith and Co-Director Linda Bluestein inducted Vail into the Clean Cities Hall of Fame on Wednesday, November 7, while at the Florida Solar Energy Center, where representatives from nearly 100 Clean Cities coalitions from across the country gathered for the 2018 Clean Cities Coordinator Training Workshop.

    Vail has been the coordinator of the Louisiana Clean Fuels coalition for nearly a decade, and her accomplishments during that time have been extensive. In 2016 alone, her coalition had an impact in energy use greater than 8.5 million gasoline gallon equivalents and averted more than 48,800 tons of emissions through projects focused on alternative and renewable fuels, advanced vehicles, idle reduction, and fuel economy improvements.

    “Her enthusiasm for the work makes us all strive to do better … be better.” Smith said.

    As a coordinator, Vail has garnered the support of both the state and the Southeast Louisiana Clean Fuels Partnership. Shortly after assuming the role as coordinator, she successfully expanded the coalition’s territory in Louisiana and has expertly guided Louisiana Clean Fuels' stakeholder base through dramatic growth. This has led to significant gains in reported alternative fuel use from mere thousands in 2012 to upwards of 8 million gallons per year. She has also been a staunch advocate of ensuring the continued operation of a landfill gas operation in Louisiana.

    More recently, Vail has been actively involved with the state of Louisiana’s planning efforts for the Volkswagen Settlement, including extending her expertise to their state website, mitigation plan, and public notices. 

    From left to right: Dennis Smith, Linda Bluestien, Ann Vail, Mark Smith.

    Louisiana Clean Fuels is a designated member of the U.S. Department of Energy’s national network of nearly 100 Clean Cities coalitions. Clean Cities coalitions foster the economic, environmental, and energy security of the United States by working locally to advance affordable, domestic transportation fuels and technologies. For more information, visit and

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    The U.S. Department of Energy, General Motors and MathWorks Launch EcoCAR Mobility Challenge

    WASHINGTON, Oct. 24, 2018 –The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), General Motors and MathWorks today announced the launch of the EcoCAR Mobility Challenge, the latest DOE-sponsored Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition (AVTC) revealing the 12 competing universities and the Chevrolet Blazer as the vehicle platform selected for the competition. 

    The headline sponsors are the U.S. Department of Energy, General Motors, and MathWorks, and the challenge is managed by Argonne National Laboratory, making EcoCAR the ultimate training ground for future leaders in the automotive industry.  

    “The future of transportation and mobility is evolving and bringing forth new technologies, challenges, and opportunities” said Acting Assistant Secretary, Cathy Tripodi. “The EcoCAR Mobility Challenge allows students to develop innovative technologies to keep America at the forefront of this changing landscape and provide consumers convenient, cost-effective options for personal mobility.”

    EcoCAR is a collegiate automotive competition aimed at developing a highly skilled, domestic workforce by providing hands-on experience designing and building next-generation mobility solutions to meet our nation’s future energy and mobility challenges. Participating teams will apply advanced propulsion systems, electrification, SAE Level 2 automation, and vehicle connectivity to improve the energy efficiency of a 2019 Chevrolet Blazer - all while balancing factors such as emissions, safety, utility, and consumer acceptability.  SAE Level 2 automation refers to a vehicle that combines automated functions, like acceleration and steering, but the driver must remain engaged with the driving task and monitor the environment at all times.

    EcoCAR teams will use onboard sensors and wireless communication from the vehicles surrounding environment to improve overall operation efficiency in the connected urban environment of the future. 

    General Motors will provide each team with a 2019 Chevrolet Blazer, which they have four years to design, integrate and refine into a new, advanced technology, energy-efficient mobility solution for the carsharing market. Teams will follow a real-world vehicle development process to meet rigorous technical constraints throughout the four-year competition, which will conclude in the summer of 2022.

    “We continue to support EcoCAR because students gain tremendous technical insights, leadership skills and hands-on experience while competing in AVTCs,” said Dan Nicholson, GM vice president, Global Propulsion Systems. “The challenges and solutions these students will develop working with their Chevrolet Blazers align with GM’s path to zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion.”

    A foundational principle of EcoCAR is the use of Model-Based Design, a mathematical and visual design approach using MATLAB and Simulink that enables users to quickly and cost-effectively manage projects, collaborate on designs, and develop complex embedded systems.

    “EcoCAR serves as an experimental laboratory, where students get to play and learn with real world tools and technologies that will help them secure jobs and build careers,” said Lauren Tabolinsky, academic program manager, MathWorks. “We are excited to once again partner with the DOE and GM in supporting this next generation of engineers as they adopt multi-disciplinary design and development approaches to experiment, fine-tune and succeed in this challenge.”

    To be successful, universities will need to recruit a diverse team of students and faculty, spanning many engineering disciplines such as mechanical, electrical, computer and software engineering, as well as communications, marketing and project management. This multi-disciplinary emphasis imitates a real-world automotive industry environment and provides graduates the technical and leadership skills needed to enter the field fully prepared for careers that will help shape the energy and mobility industry for years to come.

    The participating universities include:

    • Colorado State University (Fort Collins, CO)
    • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (Daytona Beach, FL)
    • Georgia Tech (Atlanta, GA)
    • McMaster University (Hamilton, Ontario, Canada)
    • Mississippi State University (Starkville, MS)
    • The Ohio State University (Columbus, OH)
    • University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa, AL)
    • University of Tennessee, Knoxville (Knoxville, TN)
    • University of Washington (Seattle, WA)
    • University of Waterloo (Waterloo, Ontario, Canada)
    • Virginia Tech (Blacksburg, VA)
    • West Virginia University (Morgantown, WV)

    “EcoCAR puts students in the driver’s seat of their education by providing hands-on, technical training mirroring the real-world product development process of a General Motors vehicle,” said Kristen Wahl, director of the Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition (AVTC) program at Argonne National Laboratory. “In the face of increasing global competition, EcoCAR showcases North America’s best and brightest students in STEM and exemplifies American competitiveness in automotive engineering.”

    EcoCAR builds on a proud 30-year history of DOE AVTCs that exemplify the power of public-private partnerships in providing invaluable hands-on skills to promising, young minds ready to enter the workforce. AVTCs influence and shape engineering curriculum at the university level to cultivate future transportation leaders and enhance the North American engineering workforce.

    Other participating sponsors include: NXP Semiconductors, Inc.; National Science Foundation; Intel Corporation; American Axle Manufacturing; Robert Bosch, LLC; PACCAR, Inc.; dSPACE, Inc.; Siemens PLM Software; Denso International America; Horiba; Delphi Technologies; California Air Resources Board; Proterra, Inc; tesa Tape; Vector North America, Inc.; The Electric Power Research Institute, Inc.

    For more information about the student engineering program, the participating schools or the competition sponsors, please visit

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    2018 Louisiana Clean Fuels Award Ceremony

    And the winners are...

    LCF is happy to share the award winners from the Annual Clean Fuel Leader Awards with you! Want to see if your fleet has what it takes to be a Clean Fuel Leader? Email Tyler Herrmann to learn more about our Green Fleet Certificaiton program and our Annual Report.


    2018 Katry Martin Award:

    Faltery "F.J." Jolivette – As the operator of St. Landry Parish Solid Waste's landfill gas to renewable natural gas facility, F.J. has been an integral part of the renewable natural gas industry for many years. His incredible work at St. Landry has been recognized across the nation and internationally – he recently gave a presentation in Africa on the use of landfill gas as a vehicle fuel! His industry leadership has kept St. Landry's project thriving since 2012 and he truly exemplifies the qualities that were so well loved in Katry Martin.

    2018 Clean Fuel Champion:

    Republic Services – Year after year, Republic Services has made incredible strides towards reducing fuel use and emissions. In 2017 alone, Republic Services reduced their petroleum use by 2.4 million gasoline-gallon equivalents and reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by 19,000 tons! They achieved these amazing reductions by using natural gas vehicles, reducing idling time, and training their drivers to operate more efficiently.

    2018 Rising Star:

    Stone Oil – Hitting the ground running with their "Green Initiative," Stone Oil has taken a multi-pronged approach to reducing fuel use and emissions. Repowering the majority of their engines and generators to run on biodiesel and using shore power for their shipping vessels, Stone Oil offset 861,456 gasoline-gallon equivalents of petroleum and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 10,640.5 tons!

    2018 Trail Blazer:

    SporTran – A first for Louisiana, SporTran now operates a 100% alternative fuel fleet! SporTran uses only CNG and electric buses in their fleet, and have resultingly reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by 1,532.9 tons and their petroleum use by 558,122 gasoline-gallon equivalents in 2017 alone! Not only have they done the incredible by switching to 100% alternative fuels – their CEO, Dinero Washington, has also been a leader in helping other fleets to move in the same direction.

    2018 Utility of the Year:

    Entergy – Entergy has a very diverse approach to reducing petroleum use and greenhouse gas emissions, utilizing E85, electric, and hybrid-electric vehicles, as well as route optimization and idle reduction technologies. The combination of all of these methods has resulted in the offset of 171,987 gasoline-gallon equivalents of petroleum and 1,176.9 tons of greenhouse gas emissions in 2017!

    Top Performing School District:

    Lafourche Parish School District – Lafourche School District has implemented the use of propane school buses across their fleet in order to provide cleaner air for their citizens, and more importantly, the children who ride those school buses every day. In 2017, they offset 43,603 gasoline-gallon equivalents of petroleum and the production of 17.1 tons of greenhouse gas emissions.


    2018 Top Performing Fleets / Runners Up:

    Waste Management - Through judicious use of CNG vehicles Waste Management offset 276.2 tons of greenhouse gas emissions and the use of 327,978 gasoline-gallon equivalents of petroleum in 2017. 

    Ferrel Gas - Through their use of heavy duty propane vehicles and idle reduction technologies, Ferrel Gas offset their greenhouse gas emissions by 975.9 tons and reduced their petroleum consumption by 80,346 gasoline-gallon equivalents in 2017 alone.

    Ivan Smith Furniture - Using a fleet of CNG vehicles with idle reduction technologies and operating CNG fueling stations, Ivan Smith Furnature reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by 191.1 tons and their petroleum consumption by 119,430 gasoline-gallon equivalents in 2017.

    St. Landry Parish Solid Waste - Operating a landfill gas to renewable natural gas station and utilizing a fleet of CNG vehicles, St. Landry Parish Solid Waste offset 1,748.1 tons of greenhouse gas emissions and 269,266 gasoline-gallon equivalents of petroleum in 2017.

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