Overview

The Clean Transportation program propels the development, awareness, and use of alternative fuels and advanced transportation technologies.

Our education and outreach initiatives include workshops, meetings, conferences, and communication campaigns highlighting the benefits of using clean transportation technologies. Our team provides technical assistance in the form of trainings, and fleet assessments. Also included in our portfolio of work is the distribution of grant funding to help procure clean transportation vehicles and infrastructure.

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Why It Matters

The use of fuels such as biodiesel, electricity, ethanol, natural gas, propane, and other clean transportation technologies can help to reduce emissions, cut down on fuel consumption, and even save money.

The Clean Transportation team is helping to diversify fuel supplies and support cleaner, more vibrant local and state economies. The end result – cleaner air and greater energy security.

Services

The Center is able to provide fleet utilization analyses to help fleets understand utilization across their fleet as a first step in fleet right-sizing or validating current vehicle count and mix.

A fleet utilization analysis can assist with projections for the capital replacement process. Through communication and understanding of trends and daily operations, it helps provide a better understanding of your customers and your fleet needs. Overall, it drives fleet efficiency.

A right-sizing analysis is to ensure that fleets have the optimal number of properly specified vehicles to fulfill their mission.

In some cases it justifies the need for vehicle count reduction or a need for vehicle count growth. It may also justify a need for a change in vehicle type or features. This analysis can help build a sustainable fuel efficient fleet.

The Center can analyze your fleet’s make-up and fuel usage patterns to make recommendations on the most cost-effective alternative fuels and technologies that your organization could use to become more productive and efficient.

This can help your fleet save money while reducing emissions.

The Eco-Driving Training program was created to provide an overview of low-to-no cost driving behavior changes that can lead to fuel savings, increased efficiency, prolonged vehicle life, and reduced emissions.

We offer half-day, hands-on, fuel-efficient training sessions for organizations as part of our suite of Fleet Services. We can provide direct training for drivers as well as training for managers in how to effectively reinforce safe and fuel-efficient driving techniques. To receive your eco-driving certification and sign up for the online course, please contact Rick Sapienza.

Sustainable fleet practices provide a process of continuous improvement, fleet modernization, and impact and risk reduction.

From a management perspective, a sustainable fleet can be summed up simply with three words: energy, emissions, and efficiency. Building toward a sustainable fleet is a complex multi-aspect process that involves planning, understanding, learning, tracking, analysis, training, and organizational cultural change. The Center can provide guidance and a roadmap to building and managing a sustainable fleet.

The Center can provide alternative fuel or transportation technology-specific training or a general overview of the variety of options available.

Training covers background, characteristics, safety, applications, considerations and best practices, success stories and business case studies, and marketplace availability and options. Topics include natural gas, LPG, electric vehicles (BEVs, HEVs and PHEVs), renewable fuels, biofuels, idle reduction technologies, and telematics.

Technologies

Aside from clean fuels, there have been many advancements in active and passive technologies to help vehicles become more efficient and reduce their overall emissions.

Diesel retrofits, idle reduction equipment, and telematics are just a few of the technologies that fleets have successfully implemented into their vehicles to help improve performance. Diesel retrofits reduce emissions of existing diesel engines via engine re-powering or installation of after-burn technologies. Idle reduction technologies reduce fuel use and emissions by turning a vehicle’s engine off when it is not needed. Telematics systems lead to improvements in fuel efficiency by monitoring miles driven, fuel economy, idle time, driver behavior, and onboard vehicle systems.

Biodiesel is a renewable fuel made from vegetable oil, animal fat, recycled cooking oil, seed crops, and even algae.

It can easily be blended with conventional diesel in mixtures of 5% up to 100%. Biodiesel reduces greenhouse gases, particulate matter, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and unburned hydrocarbon tailpipe emissions.

Electric vehicles typically fall under three distinct categories: hybrid electric (HEV), plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV), and electric (EV).

Hybrid electric vehicles contain both an internal combustion engine and an electric motor. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles also contain both engines but can be recharged from a wall outlet or charging station. Electric vehicles only contain an electric motor and are recharged from a wall outlet or charging station. EVs produce zero tailpipe emissions while HEVs produce no tailpipe emissions when in all-electric mode. Electric vehicles often cost less to own over the vehicle lifetime and even perform better than a traditional vehicle.

Ethanol is a fuel produced by fermenting organic materials like corn, grains, crop, and forestry waste materials.

Vehicles running on ethanol fuels emit less carbon monoxide and other toxic chemicals than those running on gasoline. Most gasoline contains a 10% blend of ethanol. However, consumers and fleets have the option to run a higher blend of 85%. Ethanol fuel is already blended into 96% of gasoline in the United States.

As a transportation fuel, natural gas can be either compressed (CNG) or liquefied (LNG).

Natural gas vehicles meet stringent 2010 federal emissions standards without utilizing diesel particulate filters which add weight and maintenance expense. CNG typically costs less than both gasoline and diesel at a $.50-$.70 less per gasoline gallon equivalent. Public and private natural gas refueling stations are widely available across the state of North Carolina for both light and heavy duty natural gas vehicles [hyperlink to clean transportation buyers book (link will change with new website)].

Propane, or liquified petroleum gas (LPG), is the world’s third most common engine fuel source with more than 270,000 vehicles on US roads in 2010.

Propane burns cleaner than gasoline, requires less maintenance, and 92% of LPG used in the U.S. is also produced here. Propane vehicles [hyperlink: clean transportation buyers book] are readily available in light, medium, or heavy duty applications direct from the manufacturers or from third-party conversions.

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Publications & Resources

5.3.2017

Propane

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5.3.2017

Natural Gas

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5.3.2017

Case Study on Compressed Natural Gas (CNG): BuildSense

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5.3.2017

Mobile Emissions and The Environment

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5.3.2017

Potential Alternative Fuel Tail Pipe Emissions Benefits

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5.3.2017

Hybrid Electric Vehicles

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5.3.2017

How To Implement: Electric Vehicles

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5.3.2017

Electric Vehicles

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5.3.2017

Case Study on Electric Vehicles

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5.3.2017

Dimethyl Ether (DME)

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5.3.2017

Waste Management

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5.3.2017

Waste Industries

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5.3.2017

UNC Charlotte

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5.3.2017

The Maintenance Team

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5.3.2017

Stevens Sausage

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5.3.2017

Novozymes

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5.3.2017

Greenleaf Nursery

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5.3.2017

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5.3.2017

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5.3.2017

City of Concord

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5.3.2017

City of Charlotte Fire Department

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5.3.2017

Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS)

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5.3.2017

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5.3.2017

Ethanol Fuel for North Carolina

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5.3.2017

How to Implement: Ethanol (E85)

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5.3.2017

Case Study on Ethanol (E85)

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5.3.2017

How to Implement: Biodiesel

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5.3.2017

Case Study on Biodiesel

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Program Staff

Matt Abele

Clean Transportation Technical Specialist

Art Samberg

Clean Power & Efficiency Project Coordinator

Heather Brutz

Clean Transportation Program Manager

JoAnn Henry

Workforce Development Program Assistant

Further Knowledge

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ENEWSLETTER SIGNUP

Keep up with the Center’s work and with industry news, by receiving one or all of our newsletters. The Center newsletter provides an overview in all areas, while program area specific newsletters dive a little deeper into their respective areas. Sign up today to stay in the loop!

 

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TAKE ACTION

Members of the community can get involved in the clean transportation conversation via our Fuel What Matters campaign. Visit FuelWhatMatters.org to learn more. NCSU students can get involved through our semester long internship program. Future events for North Carolinians to get behind the wheel of clean transportation vehicles will start at the beginning of 2017. Aside from the events mentioned above, there will be other events coming soon. Be sure to watch this space as new events will be added regularly.

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