Tampa Bay Clean Cities Coalition joins nearly 100 other coalitions nationwide in the mission to reduce petroleum use in transportation.
Last week, Clean Cities welcomed another major partner in the effort to reduce our nation’s dependence on petroleum – the brand-new Tampa Bay Clean Cities Coalition. Through its network of nearly 100 coalitions across the country, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program brings together stakeholders to increase the use of alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles, reduce idling, and improve fuel economy.
Becoming a member of Clean Cities was the culmination of two years of hard work. Communities interested in establishing a coalition first gather together local stakeholders, including vehicle fleet managers, policymakers, utilities, alternative fuel suppliers, vehicle manufacturers, and trade groups. This group, led by a coordinator, then creates a strategy specific to their area. By researching the local market, setting goals, and developing action items, they create a path forward to help their region use less traditional petroleum fuel for transportation.
Tampa Bay Clean Cities has more than 200 stakeholders, many of whom have made considerable investments in alternative fuel vehicles. For example, Tampa International Airport has a compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling station and plans to convert nearly three-quarters of its fleet to CNG over the next 10 years. TECO Energy, the local utility, has installed 12 charging stations for plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs), as well as adopted PEVs and CNG vehicles in its fleet. The University of South Florida is Tampa Bay’s host organization.
The coalition is committed to educating stakeholders on all aspects of alternative fuels. To increase public awareness, it organized National Drive Electric Week events and an alternative fuel vehicle expo. The coalition also hosted a training to help first responders learn the appropriate responses to accidents involving CNG vehicles. Other outreach efforts have included lectures on the sustainability of biofuels, a CNG maintenance facility tour, and webinars on incentives for purchasing alternative fuel vehicles.
The coalition estimates that it will displace nearly five million gallons of petroleum in 2014 with a variety of strategies, from expanding the use of CNG in transit to increasing the number of PEV charging stations. Along with the other Clean Cities Coalitions, Tampa Bay will be a key contributor as we work together to reduce billions more gallons of petroleum.
- Shannon Brescher Shea, U.S. Department of Energy
- For more information:
- Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team