Why Green Your Fleet?
Fleet vehicles are driven 2 to 7 times the miles of the average passenger vehicles, consuming more fuel and emitting more greenhouse gases and criteria emissions. Making the choice to upgrade corporate fleet vehicles to alternative fuels provides great opportunities to put large numbers of cleaner alternative fuel vehicles on the roads and help improve operational efficiency and reduce environmental impact.
There are many compelling reasons to upgrade your fleet with alternative vehicles:
- Reduce emissions. Petroleum-fueled medium and heavy-duty vehicles generate nearly half of all vehicle GHG emissions so upgrading your fleet provides a measurable ways to reduce your company’s carbon emissions.
- Be Independent. Transitioning to alternative-fueled vehicles helps decrease our dependence on petroleum, advancing our energy security.
- Make a Positive Statement. Cleaner vehicles make a positive statement to customers and the public. The public notices.
- Lower Costs. Many fleets operators and individuals have reported lower overall operational costs after upgrading to alternative-fueled vehicles.
You have options. No one fuel or technology is the single answer to all fleet applications. Natural gas and propane vehicles, hybrids, plug-in hybrids, electric vehicles, E-85 vehicles and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles can all play a role in fuel-efficient fleet upgrades.
Begin a Green Fleet Program
Before you upgrade your existing fleet or purchase even a single alternative-fueled vehicle, maximize what you have through efficient fleet management techniques.
- Plan Trips First. Use efficient route planning tools, such as Global Positioning Systems, to reduce the number of miles driven before getting behind the wheel.
- Drive Smart. Educate your drivers to be more fuel efficient on the road. Fuel costs are high and improving mileage starts with improving driving habits – smooth, steady and stop.
- Peak Operation. Proper maintenance increases engine efficiency. Routine maintenance is key including proper tire inflation, changing oil filter and sparkplugs, maintaining engine and fuel management systems.
- Technology Works. Take advantage of new technologies such as global positioning systems and fuel management software that helps to cut fuel consumption and decrease emissions, including reducing an engine’s idle time, accurately monitors speeds, maximizes routine maintenance
- Cut Resistance. Improve existing vehicle performance by replacing or retrofitting with aerodynamic technologies and low rolling resistance tires.
- Go for More. Develop corporate-wide procedures for purchasing vehicles that consider fuel efficiency and alternative fuel.
- Get a Rebate. Take advantage of incentives from local, state and federal agencies and vehicle manufacturers. A good place to start is the Alternative Fuels and Advanced Vehicles Data Center.
Resources for Improving Fuel Efficiency
Vehicle Buy-Down Incentives for Propane and Natural Gas
The Energy Commission is offering $14,540,000 in buy-down incentives for natural gas and propane on-road vehicles from the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program. Reservations are being accepted from Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and their designated dealer distributors for incentives at varying levels depending on the class and fuel type of vehicle, helping to reduce the high initial price of natural gas and propane vehicles. This vehicle buy-down program will assist public and private fleets and individual consumers in making the decision to purchase vehicles powered by non-petroleum, lower-carbon, alternative and renewable fuels.
|GVW (lbs)||Incentive Amounts Natural Gas||Incentive Amounts Propane|
|Up to 8,500||$3,000||$3,000|
|8,501 – 14,000||$8,000||$6,000|
|14,001 – 26,000||$20,000||$10,000|
|26,001 & greater||$32,000|
|Up to 14,000||$15,000|
|Greater than 14,000||$20,000|
More information about this funding can be found in the application manual. Vehicle purchasers should contact vehicle dealers for incentives on qualifying vehicles.
Click here for more information and the forms to reserve your incentive. Individual vehicle purchasers must contact vehicle dealers for incentives on single vehicles. This program expires April 1, 2013. For more information or program status updates, contact the Propane and Natural Gas Vehicle Buy-Down Program.
Clean Vehicle Rebate Project
Funded by the California Air Resources Board and implemented by the California Center for Sustainable Energy, the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project encourages and accelerates zero-emission vehicle deployment and development innovation. The Energy Commission contributed $2 million to augment this program in 2011. For more information or to apply for a rebate, visit the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project website.
Hybrid Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Program
Administered by the Air Resources Board with the Energy Commission providing $4 million for commercially available hybrid electric and zero emission trucks and buses. Learn more about the California Hybrid Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Program.
Goods Movement Emission Reduction Program
If your fleet moves products, contact your local air district and ask about the Goods Movement Emission Reduction Program. There are incentives you can find a link to your local air district at the CAPCOA website.
Additional Resources for Greening Your Fleet
Fleet managers can quickly determine their petroleum reduction and GHG emissions with this free GHG calculator tool from Clean Cities.
Puget Sound Clean Cities Coalition describes its fleet upgrading strategies.
The Environmental Defense Fund offers five easy, cost effective steps for upgrading your fleet.
- Calculate your fleet greenhouse gas emissions.