DOE Doles Out $300 Million in Clean Cities Grants to Support Clean Fuels, Vehicles, and Infrastructure Development

Filed under: Policy,Regional News | |

Last week,  Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced the selection of 25 cost-share projects under the Clean Cities program that will be funded with nearly $300 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. These projects are designed to speed the transformation of the nation’s vehicle fleet, putting more than 9,000 alternative fuel and energy efficient vehicles on the road, and establishing 542 refueling locations across the country. The Department of Energy also estimates they will help displace approximately 38 million gallons of petroleum per year.

Under the Recovery Act, the Clean Cities program will fund a range of energy efficient and advanced vehicle technologies, such as hybrids, electric vehicles, plug-in electric hybrids, hydraulic hybrids and compressed natural gas vehicles, helping reduce petroleum consumption across the U.S.  In addition, funding will support refueling infrastructure for various alternative fuel vehicles, including biofuels and natural gas.  Other efforts under the Clean Cities program include public education and training initiatives to further the program’s goal of reducing the national demand for petroleum.

The projects announced by Secretary Chu will support a combined total of more than 9,000 light, medium and heavy-duty vehicles and establish 542 refueling locations across the country.  The vehicles and infrastructure being funded include the use of natural and renewable gas, propane, ethanol, biodiesel, electricity, and hybrid technologies.  And with the cost share contributions from the recipients, every federal dollar spent will be matched by nearly two dollars from the project partners.

“The Clean Cities program is helping give state and local governments the tools they need to build a greener transportation system that will create new jobs and help to put America on the path to a clean energy future,” said Secretary Chu.  “Advancing the number of alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles on the road will increase our energy security, decrease our dependence on oil, and reduce pollution across the country.”

Last week, the Department of Energy also announced that it had selected 23 projects for up to $15 million in annual appropriations funding. Like the Recovery Act-funded projects, the annual Clean Cities projects include grants for vehicles, infrastructure, and education.

Clean Cities is a government-industry partnership that works to reduce America’s petroleum consumption in the transportation sector.  Over the last 15 years, the Clean Cities program has established local coalitions across the country that promote the growth of alternative fuels and showcase the potential of advanced and energy efficient vehicles.

The projects announced today are selections for financial award.  The final details and funding level of each project is subject to modification based on further contract negotiations between the selected entity and DOE.

Clean Cities Award Winners

Clean Cities Recovery Act Awards

Clean Cities Recovery Act Awards

North Central Texas Council of Governments’ North Central Texas Alternative Fuel and Advanced Technology. The project will deploy refueling stations and alternative fuel vehicles in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  The project includes a portfolio of different technologies and fuels, including B20 (three stations), ethanol E85 (three stations), compressed natural gas (three stations and 97 vehicles), electricity (four recharging sites and 34 vehicles), and 251 hybrid electric vehicles.  In addition to the city fleets, high mileage and high visibility fleets are included, such as Coca-Cola, Sysco, Frito Lay, school districts, and taxis.  DOE estimates that this project will help displace approximately 1.3 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $13,181,171

South Coast Air Quality Management District’s UPS Ontario-Las Vegas LNG Corridor Expansion Project. The project will complete a long-planned regional liquid natural gas (LNG) fueling corridor across the southwestern U.S., making the final connection between the existing public access LNG fuel infrastructure in Southern California and the LNG fuel stations being developed in Utah.  The project will provide a 700-mile LNG fueling corridor along one of the nation’s most heavily traveled truck routes for the movement of various goods.  UPS will construct a publicly-accessible LNG fuel station off of Interstate 15 in Las Vegas and deploy 48 heavy-duty LNG vehicles in its interstate alternative fuel operations.  The new LNG station will support these 48 trucks, an additional 161 LNG trucks in UPS’ fleet, and other LNG fleet operators in the region.  DOE estimates that the 48 trucks alone will help displace approximately 1.25 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $5,591,611

South Coast Air Quality Management District’s (SCAQMD) Heavy-Duty Natural Gas Drayage Truck Replacement Initiative. The project will replace 180 diesel drayage trucks at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach with LNG trucks.  Additionally, workshops will be made available to truck operators and technicians working on LNG trucks.  The final element of this application is an education/outreach component for alternative fueled vehicles that will be deployed by the Southern California Association of Governments Clean Cities Coalition and the SCAQMD.  DOE estimates that the project will help displace an estimated 1.8 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $9,408,389

San Bernardino Associated Governments’ J.B. Hunt LNG Truck Project: Made in America Initiative. The project will deploy 262 heavy-duty LNG trucks in Southern California and construct two LNG refueling stations in San Bernardino and South Gate (South Los Angeles) to support J.B. Hunt’s initial LNG truck operations, and will allow the fleet to add additional LNG vehicles in the future.  DOE estimates that the 262 LNG trucks will help displace more than 2.6 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $9,950,708

Maryland Energy Administration’s Maryland Hybrid Truck Goods Movement Initiative. The project will implement the largest collaborative hybrid truck project in the nation. The initiative will provide financial and technical assistance to many large fleets including: ARAMARK, Efficiency Enterprises, Nestle Water Company, Sysco, and UPS to purchase 150 hybrid electric vehicles.  This initiative demonstrates and promote of the feasibility of alternative fuel sources, education and public outreach, and reduction of pollution/emissions.  DOE estimates that the project is estimated to help displace 461,400 gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $5,924,190

New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)’s Statewide Alternative Fuel Vehicle Program for CNG, LPG, EV, and HEV Vehicles and Fueling Stations Initiative. The project will utilize multiple alternative fuels and technologies in multiple sectors across the state.  Alternative fuel and/or hybrid school buses, municipal vehicles, urban delivery, and utility vehicles will be deployed throughout the state.  The fleets include two utility fleets, five cities and towns, three counties, ten private companies, two state fleets, ten school districts, and two universities. The vehicles will be deployed across the state.  The accurate and reliable data collected from the use of these vehicles will provide NYSERDA and DOE insight on how these alternative technologies operate in diverse conditions.  DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace 302,000 gallons of petroleum per year.
Total DOE award: $13,299,101

Clean Fuels Ohio’s Ohio Advanced Transportation Partnership (OATP). The project will include the purchase and conversion of 283 alternative fuel vehicles for numerous fleets including taxis, cities, schools, and delivery vehicles. In addition to the alternative fuel vehicles, 15 alternative fueling and service stations will be constructed.  The project will be supported with public education and outreach programs.  DOE estimates that the project will help displace more than 875,000 gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $11,041,500

Utah Clean Cities Coalition’s Clean Cities Transportation Sector Petroleum Reduction Technologies Program. The initiative includes 16 new compressed natural gas (CNG) public fueling facilities, upgrades to 24 CNG public fueling facilities, three new liquid/compressed natural gas facilities, three new biodiesel public refueling stations, and increases the number of natural gas vehicles operating in Utah by 678.  DOE estimates that this initiative will help displace 1.1 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $14,908,648

Clean Energy Coalition’s CEC Michigan Green Fleets Initiative. The project will increase the use of natural gas, electric and hybrid electric vehicles in 13 sites throughout Michigan. A total of 271 alternative fuel vehicles and 19 alternative fueling sites will be added throughout the state.  Fleets include transportation authorities, cities, school districts, the University of Michigan, FedEx, and Meijer.  DOE estimates that a wide variety of viable vehicles and technologies will help lead to the displacement of 1.3 million gallons of petroleum per year.
Total DOE award: $14,970,144

Railroad Commission of Texas’ Texas Propane Fleet Pilot Program. The project will deploy 882 propane vehicles, including 245 propane school buses, 24 medium-duty propane trucks and vans, and 613 propane-fueled light-duty vehicles for 40 school districts and public agencies.  To support the vehicles, 35 propane refueling stations will be constructed.  The stations will allow the fleets to lower their costs by buying fuel in bulk, access federal motor fuel excise tax credits, refuel at the times most convenient to their schedules, and model successful use of propane to nearby peers. DOE estimates that these projects will help displace more than three million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $12,633,080

City of Chicago, Department of Environment’s Chicago Area Alternative Fuels Deployment Project. The project will deploy 554 alternative fuel and hybrid electric vehicles and install 153 alternative fueling and electric vehicle charging stations throughout the Chicago region.  The initiative also includes garbage trucks, also known as refuse collection vehicles.  The project will result in expanded availability of alternative fuels with 17 new CNG and E85 fueling stations and 63 electric vehicle charging stations. DOE estimates that the project will help displace 3 million gallons of petroleum per year.
Total DOE award: $14,999,658

Puget Sound Clean Air Agency’s Puget Sound Clean Cities Petroleum Reduction Project. The project will expand the use of alternative fuel and advanced vehicle technology to create a regional sustainable market for renewable alternative fuels with the lowest lifecycle emissions, such as biogas made from waste products and solar energy, to power electric vehicles; enhance the local economy; and elevate public awareness through innovative outreach campaigns designed to reach an unprecedented audience of over 30 million people per year.  DOE estimates that the project will help displace three million gallons of petroleum per year.
Total DOE award: $14,999,927

Texas State Technical College’s Development of a National Liquid Propane (Autogas) Refueling Network, Clean School Bus/Vehicle Incentive & Green Jobs Outreach Program. The project will result in the development of approximately 184 liquid propane Autogas refueling stations in the following major metropolitan areas: Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Denver, Sacramento, Los Angeles, Dallas, Phoenix, Indianapolis, Seattle, Orlando, San Diego, St. Louis, San Antonio/Austin, and Oklahoma City as well as a refueling corridor along I-10 in Louisiana (New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Lake Charles).  The initiative will also support the purchase of dedicated propane school buses and vehicles and, provide an innovative outreach program designed specifically to retrain and certify U.S. veterans and out of work or at risk service technicians for work in the alternative fuel and advanced vehicle technology industries.  DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace more than 3 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $12,299,828

New Jersey Clean Cities Coalition’s New Jersey Compressed Natural Gas Refuse Trucks, Shuttle Buses and Infrastructure. The project will deploy 277 heavy-duty natural gas garbage trucks and shuttle buses and four new CNG fueling stations throughout Newark, Camden, Trenton, Atlantic City, and Egg Harbor Township.  The initiative also includes projects to educate the public about the benefits of using clean burning, domestically produced natural gas in vehicles.  DOE estimates that the project will help displace 1.8 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $14,997,240

Greater Long Island Clean Cities Coalition’s Long Island Regional Energy Collaborative Promoting a Green Economy through Clean Alternatives. The project will deploy five CNG stations and 87 heavy-duty trucks throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties.  The alternative fuel stations will be accessible to the public and include the installation of five new compressed natural gas fueling stations.  The proposed 87 alternative fuel vehicles include: 44 CNG refuse trucks, 40 heavy-duty CNG dump trucks, and three heavy-duty CNG trucks.  DOE estimates that the project will help displace 351,000 gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $14,994,183

DeKalb County’s DeKalb County/Metropolitan Atlanta Alternative Fuel and Advanced Technology Vehicle Project. The project will convert local landfill gas (LFG), a renewable fuel source, to compressed natural gas and develop five CNG fueling stations throughout the metro-Atlanta area.  The project also includes construction of a B20 station.  Team partners will purchase a total of 191 commercially available light- to heavy-duty alternative-fuel and advanced-technology vehicles.  DOE estimates that the project will help displace 490,000 gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $14,983,167

Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy’s Paving the Way with Propane: The AutoGas Corridor Development Program. The project is aimed at building the infrastructure to encourage public and private vehicle operators to convert existing vehicles from conventional gasoline to clean propane.  The initiative includes 17 new propane fueling stations along high traffic roadways from Washington, D.C. to Florida to Mississippi to create the nation’s first propane corridor.  DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace 3.9 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $8,605,100

State of Wisconsin’s Wisconsin Clean Transportation Program. The project will deploy 502 alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles through 119 public and private fleets throughout the state.  The program includes the installation of 10 alternative fuel refueling sites (two B20, one Electric Recharging, and seven CNG).  DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace 1.6 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $15,000,000

Southern CA Association of Governments Clean Cities Coalition’s Expanding California’s E85 Ethanol Fueling Infrastructure. The project will add 55 E85 fueling stations throughout California.  The stations will be placed in the areas with the highest concentration of flex-fuel vehicles.  DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace approximately 3.5 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $6,917,200

The Treasure Valley Clean Cities Coalition’s Idaho Petroleum Reduction Leadership Project. The project will replace 28 heavy-duty diesel refuse trucks with CNG trucks.  A CNG fueling station will be constructed at 2 of the recipient’s, Allied Waste, locations.  Allied Waste will conduct two outreach campaigns to encourage other fleet operators and the public to use CNG and other alternative fuel vehicles.  DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace 255,000 gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $5,519,862

Metropolitan Energy Information Center’s Midwest Region Alternative Fuels Project. The project will include 27 alternative fuel stations (16 CNG, 7 B20/E85, one B20, three Electric Charging) and deploy 373 alternative fuel and advance technology vehicles (235 CNG, 58 HEV, two LPG, two EV).  The stations will provide additional CNG fueling in cities and along the Interstate corridors that pass through Kansas City – East to West on I-70 and North to South on I-35.  Additionally, an extensive public awareness program will expand the interest and adoption of alternative fuels and advanced vehicle technology in the Midwest region.  DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace 548,000 gallons of petroleum.
Total DOE award: $14,999,905

Greater New Haven Clean Cities Coalition, Inc.’s Connecticut Clean Cities Future Fuels Project. The project will deploy multiple fuels and technologies.  Vehicles to be deployed include 163 CNG, the vast majority for high mileage taxis and 18 heavy-duty LNG refuse trucks.  Infrastructure to be deployed includes three CNG stations, one combined B20/CNG/Electric station, one L/CNG station, one hydrogen station, and seven electric chargers.  DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace 1.4 million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $13,195,000

State of Indiana’s: Central Indiana Clean Cities Alliance Comprehensive Alternative Fuels Implementation Plan. The project will implement propane, compressed natural gas, and hybrid vehicles from light- to heavy-duty and includes infrastructure for CNG and E85 vehicles.  The fleets involved include the state’s municipality fleets, Sysco Distribution, and others.  This project incorporates more than 900 alternative fuel vehicles and 13 fueling sites. DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace one million gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $10,125,000

Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition’s Hybrid Electric School Buses Provide New Horsepower for Kentucky. The project will replace 190 older diesel school buses with hybrid electric school buses to be used in school districts throughout Kentucky.  The initiative also includes technical training programs and educational outreach.  DOE estimates that the project will help displace 122,000 gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $12,980,000

Triangle J Council of Governments’ Carolinas Blue Skies & Green Jobs Initiative. The project will include vehicles and fueling infrastructure for electric, hybrid-electric, compressed natural gas, propane, E85, and biodiesel fuels and technologies to be deployed throughout North Carolina and South Carolina.  The project includes 45 E85 and B20 stations, eight propane stations, and 132 electric vehicle recharging sites.  New vehicles to be deployed include 55 CNG vehicles, 363 propane vehicles, 89 hybrid electric vehicles, and 56 neighborhood electric vehicles.  DOE estimates that the initiative will help displace 724,000 gallons of petroleum annually.
Total DOE award: $12,975,388

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Author: Tracey de Morsella (323 Articles)

Tracey de Morsella started her career working as an editor for US Technology Magazine. She used that experience to launch Delaware Valley Network, a publication for professionals in the Greater Philadelphia area. Years later, she used the contacts and resources she acquired to work in executive search specializing in technical and diversity recruitment. She has conducted recruitment training seminars for Wachovia Bank, the Department of Interior and the US Postal Service. During this time, she also created a diversity portal called The Multicultural Advantage and published the Diversity Recruitment Advertising Toolkit, a directory of recruiting resources for human resources professionals. Her career and recruitment articles have appeared in numerous publications and web portals including Woman Engineer Magazine,, Job Search Channel, Workplace Diversity Magazine, Society for Human Resource Management web site, NSBE Engineering Magazine,, and Human Resource Consultants Association Newsletter. Her work with technology professionals drew her to pursuing training and work in web development, which led to a stint at Merrill Lynch as an Intranet Manager. In March, she decided to combine her technical and career management expertise with her passion for the environment, and with her husband, launched The Green Economy Post, a blog providing green career information and covering the impact of the environment, sustainable building, cleantech and renewable energy on the US economy. Her sustainability articles have appeared on Industrial Maintenance & Plant Operation, Chem.Info,FastCompany and CleanTechies.

  • Dehran Duckworth

    The biodiesel story is really sadly very overlooked and not talked about on any national level in the mainstream, so the general public really does not understand. The original diesel engine was designed to burn vegetable oil, and biodiesel is just refined vegetable oil. Its the only hope right now for a smooth transition to drastically reducing emissions while not asking anybody to spend any extra money or going too much out of their way. I traded in my gas car for a diesel vw and run pure biodiesel in it and it runs great, I’m one of the few powerful luxury zero emissions cars around and I pay the same I would for diesel while getting 35-40 MPG. I use biodiesel for heat and hot water as well. It didnt cost any extra money to switch and I’m supporting a local fuel supplier. Biodiesel can take the place of traditional heating oil without changing the boiler, heat hot water, and generate electricity with very limited infrastructure retro fitting. I’m actually spending less on home heating oil because the state offers a $.20 per gallon tax credit to consumers of biodiesel as home heating oil. The technology is here, the EPA has recently designated biodiesel an “advanced biofuel”. When biodiesel is produced with soybean oil, there is no impact to the world food supply because soy oil is a byproduct of all soy based food production, we dont eat it. It would not be the worst thing to consider planting soy on every square inch of fallow land next year. In one year we would have a huge soy meal surplus and billions of gallons of fuel that could be used in all diesel vehicles right away. Also, plants absorb co2, which is something we really need to do right now being at over 300 PPM in the atmosphere, the planet cannot sustain current conditions with that much unabsorbed co2 in the air.
    The best thing we could do is plant things like our lives depended on it, because they do. Imagine a whole new reinvigorated agricultural sector? Biodiesel would put America back to work and make us energy independent (we really only buy @12% of our oil from the middle east). There are alot of diesel trucks on the road, and all truck manufacturers condone the use of some amount of biodiesel in their engines but the fact is pure biodiesel works the best.
    Mono-cropping with soy is not as destructive as most crops because all legumes have nitrogen fixing properties, always naturally leaving nitrogen fertilizer in the soil with the roots after the soy has been harvested, so no need for dangerous chemical fertilizers like the ones that have already created a dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico at the mouth of the Mississippi that extends thirty miles out, thanks to corn production runoff.

    At the time that Rudolf Diesel invented the Diesel engine, his stated mission was to create a machine that the common man could fuel with his own crops, to harvest his own crops.
    Biodiesel can be made from peanuts, hemp, jatropha, rapeseed, sunflower, canola, waste cooking oil, and waste animal fat to name a few. This is a great little ad from Case/ International Harvester, they make tractors and trucks and in some cases ship the vehicles with a biodiesel blend already in the engine.