The Energy Department announced today $6 million for 11 projects aimed at improving potential buyers’ experiences with alternative fuel and plug-in electric vehicles, supporting training, and integrating alternative fuels into emergency planning. By removing barriers to market growth, these projects will expand Americans’ transportation options, minimize fuel costs, reduce carbon pollution, and increase the nation’s energy security.
Since 1993, the Energy Department’s Clean Cities program has supported community-led efforts to help fleets and consumers find the alternative fuel or fuel-efficient solutions that meet their needs. Through the Clean Cities program, these projects address many of the challenges limiting the use of alternative fuel and plug-in electric vehicles, particularly in these three areas: on-the-road demonstrations, safety-related training, and emergency preparedness.
Five projects will enable consumers and fleets to drive alternative fuel vehicles for extended periods of time to help them better understand how these vehicles can meet their everyday needs. For example, a Tallahassee, Florida project will allow thousands of visitors in Orlando to rent and receive information on plug-in electric vehicles.
Five projects will focus on training for first responders, public safety officials, tow-truck operators, and collision repair specialists and teach these service providers how to safely handle alternative fuel vehicles. One project in Morgantown, West Virginia will not only develop new curriculum, but provide it for free online and train educators that can present it in person.
Incorporating alternative fuel vehicles into emergency strategies, such as State Energy Assurance Plans, will help state and local governments adopt these vehicles and understand how they can use them effectively during emergencies. An Arlington, Virginia project will incorporate alternative fuel and advanced vehicles into multiple emergency preparedness plans that address varied geographies and potential incidents.