2014: The Year in Review
Oh What A Night! | Members Shine at Annual Awards & Recognition Dinner
Clean Cities members and friends came together April 29 for an elegant celebration of our 2014 accomplishments.
The evening featured presentations by:
- Charles Knutson, Senior Policy Advisor to Governor Inslee;
- Alex Schroeder, Transportation Technology Deployment Manager at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory; and
- The University of Washington EcoCAR3 team.
We also reviewed highlights of our work together the past year, beginning with the results of our 2014 Annual Data Survey. Each year wemeasure the progress of our members and partners by collecting data on the amount and type of fuel used by their fleets. The U.S. Department of Energy sets a target for each Coalition to reduce petroleum use by 16 percent per year over the previous year.
Turns out 2014 was a banner year for us!
Preliminary results suggest that our members and stakeholders displaced a total of 18.8 million gallons of petroleum in 2014. This translates into 95,700 TONS of greenhouse gas pollution avoided. Note: These numbers are preliminary and in the process of being verified by the U.S. Department of Energy. We’ll announce final official numbers once they are confirmed. Stay tuned!
Other 2014 Highlights:
New Coalition Structure
2014 was a year of transition. The departure of our former coordinator, Stephanie Meyn, triggered a re-evaluation of the Coalitions’ staffing needs by our host, the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency. The outcome? The Clean Air Agency concluded that the Coalition is an effective program that is successfully reducing petroleum, forging partnerships, and protecting health and the environment – and that the Coalition could do even more for its members with more staff. Two distinct co-coordinator positions were created – and filled in July 2014. In case you haven’t met us yet:
o Scott DeWees coordinates technical and economic analysis, with an emphasis on medium and heavy-duty applications.
o Kimberley Cline coordinates partnerships, policy & outreach, with an emphasis on light-duty electric applications.
Now that we’re better staffed, a key undertaking is reassessing the suite of services we offer our members and looking for ways we can add value. We’re currently in the process of reaching out to every member organization, with the goal of learning about your goals and motivations for being part of Clean Cities, and what we can do to help you fulfill those goals. We’ll synthesize the feedback we receive and determine what enhancements, if any, to make to the services and benefits we offer.
Together, we strive to provide more benefits to our members!
Member Services: Education & Outreach
We often hear that members really value being kept informed of what’s going in the realm of alternative fuels. With that in mind, in the past year we have ramped up our education and outreach channels:
- We gave our website a long overdue makeover.
- We reinstated weekly news digest service, capturing the latest headlines on alternative fuel news.
- We maintain our quarterly newsletter, and want to feature more member news in each issue. Please send us any newsy tidbits you’d like to share!
- We are sending occasional legislative updates, tracking what’s happening in Olympia of interest to our members.
- We recently started event bulletins, highlighting upcoming events – especially those with discounts or other opportunities for members.
- We became more active on social media. Like us! (If you don’t already.) We’ll like you back.
Another way we’re working to build awareness of our coalition and create opportunities for our members is by forging partnerships with other networks. In 2014, we became active with the following:
- Alternative Fuel Rule Technical Advisory Group: In this forum we provide consultation to state fleet managers on petroleum reduction initiatives while also relaying information on their successes and challenges back to our members. We see this as a critical link between the development and implementation of the alternative fuel rule.
- Pacific Coast Collaborative West Coast Electric Fleets: we’re engaged with this initiative, which encourages fleets to pledge to adopt, or consider adopting, zero emission vehicles. The initiative is also developing an online resource to provide fleets with tools and technical information to aid in decision-making around zero emission vehicles.
- King County-Cities Climate Collaboration (K4C): We’re advising this collaboration of King County and eleven cities — Bellevue, Burien, Issaquah, Kirkland, Mercer Island, Redmond, Renton, Seattle, Shoreline, Snoqualmie, and Tukwila — on actions they can take to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transportation.
The past year has been an active one legislatively, with many bills proposed to advance alternative fuels and electric vehicles and infrastructure.
- We supported bills to:
- Extend alternative fuel / electric vehicle sales tax exemptions beyond their current expiration date of June 30, 2015.
- Expand sales tax exemptions to businesses.
- Repeal the zero emission vehicle prohibition in the Clean Car Standards and Clean Car Program.
- We supported the Clean Fuel Standard.
- We participated in the Federal Energy Independence Summit. Kimberley Cline, along with Steering Committee members Ben Farrow and Darren Engle, headed to Washington, DC to meet with Washington State legislators and share with them the work that we’re doing, and what they can do to support alternative fuels at the federal level.
A cornerstone of our work is coordinating events to connect our members with information, resources and potential new partners. In the past year, we organized, or participated in:
- Electric Vehicle Policy At Work. This morning workshop focused on the policy implications of offering workplace charging.
- Green Transportation Summit. We coordinated a session on biodiesel, and also participated in a panel on electric vehicles.
- Puget Sound National Association of Fleet Administrators – Green Fleet Summit. We led a session on the forthcoming alternative fuel rule – and its implications for local fleets.
- Plugged-In: Driving Change at the Capitol. Held in Olympia, this event created an opportunity for legislators and government staff to ride in, and drive, a variety of electric vehicles.
Keep an eye out for more events coming this year. We have an idle reduction workshop scheduled in June; and are considering additional training opportunities in natural gas, propane autogas, biodiesel, and/or the alternative fuel rule. Have ideas? Always welcome – just contact Kimberley or Scott.
We capped the evening by recognizing members who are leading, innovating and going above and beyond to help our region reduce its use of imported petroleum. Congratulations to our winners!
Many thanks to all our members, stakeholders, and other partners who helped make 2014 a tremendous success!
Here’s to more in 2015!
Check out our blog