Coordinator's Corner

Clean Cities Annual Survey
First off, thank you to everyone who completed the Clean Cities Annual Survey! This information will be used to demonstrate Central Texas' deployment and advancement of alternative fuel vehicles and other fuel economy measures. Once the report has been reviewed by the Department of Energy, we'll provide some highlights. 

Clean Cities Budget
We're excited to announce that in the most recent version of the omnibus spending bill, the national Clean Cities program would receive $37.8 million in funding - a $3.8 million increase since last year - supporting nearly 100 coalitions across the U.S. Sam Spofforth, President of Clean Fuels Ohio, emphasizes: “If this language holds in the final version, the Clean Cities program will have the funding needed to perform activities vital to U.S. energy security and progress on advanced transportation technologies.”

Clean Cities ROI
According to the Department of Energy's 2015 Annual Metrics Report, from 2006 through 2015, Clean Cities has leveraged $207.3 million in program funding into another $2.2 billion in state, local, and private investment in alternative fuels deployment projects. Essentially, for every $1 invested in Clean Cities, there is a return on investment of $10.60. 

Clean Cities Updates

Nonattainment Designation
On March 29, 2018, the EPA wrote Governor Abbott indicating their intent to designate, "at best", parts of Bexar County "Unclassifiable", allowing 60 days for the state to provide additional information to support an "Attainment" classification. The letter indicated their intent to designate the other seven counties in the MSA as in "Attainment". By July 17, 2018, the EPA will issue their final designations. See the EPA website for more information on their ozone classification levels

Alternative Fuels Tax Credit
On March 7, 2018, the IRS issued the procedures for claiming the $0.50/gallon credit for alternative fuel sold in 2017. The tax credit is available for “natural gas, liquefied hydrogen, propane, P-Series fuel, liquid fuel derived from coal through the Fischer-Tropsch process, and compressed or liquefied gas derived from biomass.” A single one-time claim should be made NO LATER than September 29, 2018.  Read NGT News for a summary of the updates and consult with the IRS on filing a claim

Volkswagen Settlement
On March 28, the Alamo Area Council of Governments Board of Directors and AIR Executive Committee voted to submit comments on the TCEQ's draft beneficiary mitigation plan. You can find a catalog of all the comments submitted to TCEQ on their web page. Submit your comments on the settlement by emailing TCEQ at vwsettle@tceq.texas.gov

Alternative Fuel Corridors
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has completed a second round of designations of national electric vehicle charging, hydrogen, propane, and natural gas fueling corridors. The alternative fuel corridors are designated in strategic locations along major highways to improve the mobility of alternative fuel passenger and commercial vehicles. In the Alamo Area service area, I-37 was nominated in Round 2 for CNG and LNG. For more information, including a list of the designated corridor-ready and corridor-pending corridors, see the FHWA alternative fuel corridors page.

CNG Corridor Map,TX
CNG Corridor Map - Round 1 + Round 2, FHWA

Grants and Funding Opportunities

*Just Released* Texas Natural Gas Vehicle Grant Program - Deadline: May 31, 2019
Individuals, businesses, and governmental entities that currently operate heavy-duty or medium-duty motor vehicles in the Clean Transportation Zone can apply for funds to repower the vehicles with a natural gas or propane engine, or replace the vehicle with a new natural gas or propane powered vehicle. Only diesel or gasoline vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating greater than 8,500 lbs. are eligible for repower or replacement under the TNGVGP. Eligible fuels for the new vehicle include Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), Liquid Natural Gas (LNG), or Liquid Propane Gas (LPG). $15.5 million in grant-funding is available. Applications will be accepted until May 31, 2019 - or until all grant funds have been awarded. For more information, visit the TNGVGP website and contact TCEQ.  

New Technology Implementation Grants - Deadline: May 1, 2018
The TCEQ's New Technology Implementation Grant (NTIG) provides funding for electricity storage projects related to renewable energy, such as lithium ion batteries or thermal storage. 

Texas Clean School Bus Program - Deadline: April 26, 2019
Under the Texas Clean School Bus Program, the TCEQ will provide grants to offset the incremental cost of eligible projects that reduce diesel exhaust emissions. Eligible projects include the purchase and installation of eligible retrofit systems on eligible buses. School districts that are interested in purchasing propane school buses, but do not have access to a grant writer may seek assistance from the Propane Council of Texas (PROCOT). For more information on PROCOT, email Jackie Mason

Tesla EVSE Incentive Program 
In preparation for the deployment of their Model 3 vehicles, Tesla is subsidizing installation costs and providing free Tesla and universal charging stations to eligible workplaces and destination charging locations. For more information on this program, please contact Lily Lowder

Upcoming Events

Green Transportation Summit and Expo - April 17-19, 2018
The Green Transportation Summit & Expo (GTSE) is the region's premier fleet modernization and alternative fuels event. GTSE boasts the strongest gathering of fleet professionals in the clean fuels industry. The event is held in Tacoma, Washington. 

Advanced Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo - April 30 - May 3, 2018
The Advanced Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo is the nation's largest advanced transportation technology and clean fleet event. Connected vehicle technologies, fuel efficiency improvement strategies and equipment, and drivetrain electrification will be key focal points for the 2018 show, held in Long Beach, California.

Volkswagen Settlement for School Bus Fleets - June 14, 2018*
Is your school district interested in taking advantage of Volkswagen Settlement funds? Join the Alamo Area Clean Cities Coalition in breaking down the updates to the settlement, alternative fuel options for school buses, and advice from key experts. The event will be held at the Alamo Area Council of Governments in San Antonio. 


Natural Gas Trucks: 5 Key Things You Need to Know - REGISTRATION
April 4 @ 12 PM CST, Hosted by the Advanced Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo

Learn how to save on costs, meet regulatory requirements, and market your fleet as environmentally friendly. Participate in this webinar to gain insight into:
  1. Average lifetime NOx reductions compared to diesel and electric trucks
  2. Why natural gas offers long-term price stability compared to diesel
  3. Available funding programs that can offset purchase costs
  4. How fleets can monetize the low-carbon value of renewable natural gas (RNG)
  5. Which OEMs have commercially available products
Fleets for the Future: Incorporating Electric Vehicles into your Fleet - REGISTRATION
April 18 @ 1 PM CST, Hosted by the National Association of Regional Councils (NARC)
During this webinar, NARC's technical experts will be discussing electric vehicle opportunities on the market today, how to assess the suitability in your fleet, and how incorporating electric vehicles in your fleet can help you reduce costs. NARC's team will also provide information about our electric vehicle procurement best practices guide.

Recent Publications

Potentials for Platooning in U.S. Highway Freight Transportation
Platooning involves the use of vehicle-to-vehicle communications and sensors, such as cameras and radar, to virtually connect two or more trucks together in a convoy. The virtual link enables all of the vehicles in the platoon to communicate with each other, allowing them to automatically accelerate together, brake together, and to follow each other at a closer distance than is typically possible with unlinked trucks. Early studies have shown that 65% of current long-haul truck miles could potentially be platooned, reducing total truck fuel consumption by 4%. For more information, read the National Renewable Energy's Laboratory's report

Light Duty Vehicle CO2 & Fuel Economy Trends
In 2017, about 46% of all new cars achieved 30 miles per gallon (mpg) or higher while the number of cars exceeding 50 mpg rose to about 5%. For light trucks, almost two-thirds achieved fuel economy above 20 mpg and less than one percent fell below 15 mpg. By contrast, in 1975, about 88% of new cars achieved less than 20 mpg and about 7% got less than 10 mpg. For more information on the EPA's report, visit their website

fuel economy

Clean Cities Spotlight

It’s official—The Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) Station Locator website and mobile application have undergone a major makeover. The updated Station Locator offers new features and an improved user interface built on the same reliable, comprehensive, and fuel-neutral data that our partners have come to trust. The Station Locator lists public and some private stations for the following fuels: CNG, LNG, propane, ethanol (E85), hydrogen, and EVSE. Here are some of the Station Locator's updated features:

  • The Find Public Stations tab allows users to search for public stations at a specific location, with the option to search for all fuels or just one. The user can also search by fuel-specific criteria, such as the Level of EV charging stations, and primary versus secondary propane refueling stations. 
  • The Map a Route feature shows specified fuel types available along a route between two locations. 
  • The Analyze and Download Data tab allows users to refine their search using filters, broken out into three categories: Location, Fuel, and Station.
AFDC station locator

For more information:

Lily Lowder, Alamo Area Clean Cities Coordinator
Website: www.aacog.com/cleancities 
Email: llowder@aacog.com
Phone: (210) 362-5277
Fax: (866) 332-3252 C/O Lily Lowder

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