Clean Cities coalitions across the nation recently reached a significant milestone: we collectively reduced one billion gallons of petroleum – in 2013 alone! This in turn also prevented the production of 7.5 million tons of greenhouse gases – the equivalent to removing more than 1.5 million cars from the road.
The milestone is particularly significant in Western Washington, where transportation is our number one source of greenhouse gases (and other pollutants). Less petroleum means better air quality, improved public health, and increased energy and economic independence. And we certainly did our share – our efforts through Western Washington Clean Cities helped reduce the equivalent of 16.5 million gallons of petroleum!
It wasn’t too long ago when Clean Cities celebrated a billion cumulative gallons saved. So how did Clean Cities coalitions across the country meet this impressive landmark in 2013? By promoting and ultimately displacing petroleum with a variety of alternative fuels. Here’s the breakdown of fuels that were used instead of oil by the nearly 475,000 Clean Cities-registered alternative fuel vehicles:
- 56% compressed natural gas (CNG)
- 15% biodiesel
- 12% ethanol
- 7% propane
- 5% liquefied natural gas (LNG)
- 5% electricity
Nationally, CNG remains the most widespread alternative fuel, due in large part to its increasing popularity with large fleet vehicles, like garbage trucks and school buses. Propane also continues to grow, with coalitions reporting twice the number of propane-powered vehicles as the previous year. And with news recently that major carmakers are focusing their attention towards fuel cell vehicles, it’s entirely possible that hydrogen will make this list in the coming years.
In Western Washington, alternative fuel vehicles made up 40 percent of the region’s oil displacement. Other notable reductions came from the adoption of electric and plug-in vehicles (24 percent), hybrid vehicles (17 percent), and declines in local fleets’ vehicle miles traveled (17 percent). All this amounted to the avoidance of over 93,000 tons of greenhouse gases.
Achieving this milestone would not have been possible without the commitment of Western Washington Clean Cities members and partners! Thanks to your dedication and spirit of innovation, our coalition remains a leading player in national Clean Cities petroleum reduction successes. Let’s keep it up!
-Western Washington Clean Cities Team