Clean Vehicles, Clean Fuels, Clean Air, Clean Cities!

Archive for August, 2019

Chicago Area Now Meets Federal Air Quality Standard for Fine Particulate Matter

Wednesday, August 28th, 2019

CHICAGO, Aug. 28, 2019 – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently approved the State of Illinois’ request to formally redesignate the Chicago area to attainment of the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for fine particulate matter. Recent air monitoring data show the entire Chicago area now meets the national standard set to protect public health.

The Chicago area – and also the entire state of Illinois – currently is achieving the 2012 annual National Ambient Air Quality Standard for fine particulate matter. The EPA approved Illinois’ request to redesignate Chicago.

“For 25 years, our Chicago area coalition has worked with the U.S. EPA, the Illinois EPA, and our stakeholders, including public and private fleets, to reduce air pollution from the transportation sector,” said John Walton, chair, Chicago Area Clean Cities. “Through combined regulatory and volunteer efforts, these organizations have played an important role and contributed to the success of the Chicago area in lowering harmful emissions.

“We are especially proud of the role that our member fleets have played in reducing pollution,” Walton said. “Through the use of renewable and other alternative fuels, such as biodiesel, ethanol, compressed natural gas, propane, and electricity, we will continue to see fine particulate matter emissions trending downward.”

The Chicago area was designated as nonattainment area for the 1997 fine particulate matter by the U.S. EPA based on a multifactor analysis, including air-quality monitoring data. The Clean Air Act pertaining to engine technology and fuel mandates helped to decrease emissions in the Chicago area to achieve the most current standard. Nationally, the concentration of fine particulate matter has decreased 41 percent from 2000 to 2017.

Fine particulate matter are inhalable particles with diameters smaller than 2.5 micrometers. Most particles form in the atmosphere as a result of complex reactions of chemicals such as sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides, which are pollutants emitted from power plants, industries, and automobiles. Inhaling fine particulate matter can affect the lungs and heart. People with pre-existing heart or lung diseases, children, and the elderly are most at risk from exposure to particulate matter. Additionally, fine particulate matter is a major component of haze, which can reduce visibility.

Chicago Area Clean Cities, a nonprofit coalition focused on promoting clean transportation in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs, was founded in 1994. Celebrating its 25thanniversary this year, the coalition’s membership is comprised of federal, state and local governments, corporations, small businesses, and individuals. These stakeholders come together to share information and resources, educate the public, help craft public policy, and collaborate on projects that reduce petroleum use.

“Our member fleets have reduced hundreds of millions of gallons of petroleum and millions of tons in greenhouse-gas emissions,” Walton added. “We’ve helped to facilitate the distribution of grant dollars for clean vehicles and alternative fuel stations. But, our work is not finished. In several Illinois counties, the ozone standard has not been achieved, the large number of older and more pollution-emitting vehicles are still a concern, and millions of Illinois citizens are suffering from lung disease. We must be diligent in our continued efforts to keep the momentum going.”

Chicago Area Clean Cities is one of nearly 100 coalitions across the country affiliated with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program, which brings together stakeholders to increase the use of alternative fuel and advanced-vehicle technologies, reduce idling, and improve fuel economy and air quality. The coalition concentrates its efforts on educating businesses and municipalities in the six-county Chicago region, including Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will counties. To become involved, visit chicagocleancities.org.

For more information about NAAQS: https://www.epa.gov/naaqs

For information about air quality in your area: https://www.airnow.gov

For information about air quality trends: https://www.epa.gov/air-trends

 

Chicagoland Businesses, Municipalities Have Chance to Learn About Electric Trucks, Utility Vehicles

Monday, August 12th, 2019

WOOD DALE, Ill., Aug. 12, 2019 – Electric vehicles aren’t only being considered by consumers. Businesses and municipalities also are looking at the future of transportation, and planning what they will need to efficiently operate in the coming years.

With that in mind, Chicago Area Clean Cities, a nonprofit coalition focused on educating commercial and government fleets in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs about clean-vehicle technologies, is hosting a free Fleet Education Seminar on Thursday, Sept. 5. The program will help fleets to learn the ins-and-outs of operating electric utility vehicles and trucks of various sizes.

“Our goal is to provide businesses, cities, and other officials with the information they need to make the right decisions to run their operations,” said John Walton, chair, Chicago Area Clean Cities. “This seminar will delve deeply into electrification and what you need to know to determine whether electric utility vehicles and trucks will help you get jobs done, while lowering emissions and maintenance expenses.”

Representatives from vehicle manufacturers – including Mitsubishi Fuso, Tropos Motors, and Energetics Drivetrains – will highlight vehicles ranging from low-speed compact utility vehicles to medium-duty delivery trucks, vans and shuttle buses. Experts will highlight how to get your garage ready for electric vehicles.

The program will be held at the Maple Meadows Golf Club, 272 S. Addison Road in Wood Dale. The free seminar will kick off the day to be followed by an afternoon of golf and a reception.

Fleet managers, government officials, campus leaders, maintenance personnel, landscaping crews, and other professionals are invited to attend the morning’s free seminar and stay for the golf outing in the afternoon.

“We’ve been hosting our golf outing for nearly 20 years, and we have people join us from throughout the Chicago area who are experts at technical solutions that help fleets realize a fast return on investment, while also improving air quality and saving fuel,” Walton said. “The networking opportunities throughout the day are fantastic.”

To register for the seminar and golf, visit https://chicagocleancities.org/event/cleanair.

Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, Chicago Area Clean Cities (CACC) supports local actions to improve the environmental performance and efficiency of the transportation sector in the six-county Chicago area. CACC’s membership is comprised of federal, state and local governments, commercial fleets, auto manufacturers, dealerships, environmental organizations, corporations, small businesses, and individuals.

CACC is one of nearly 100 coalitions across the country that are affiliated with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program, which brings together stakeholders to increase the use of alternative fuel and advanced-vehicle technologies, reduce idling, and improve fuel economy and air quality. The coalition concentrates its efforts on educating businesses and municipalities in the six-county Chicago area, including Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties. For more, visit https://chicagocleancities.org.

 

News Media Contact:

Joe Koenig
(708) 613-5005