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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

Biodiesel Event Helps Fleets Save Money, Promotes Clean Air in Illinois

Tuesday, July 9th, 2019

BLOOMINGTON, Ill., July 9, 2019 — Breathing clean air shouldn’t be a luxury. That’s why partners across the Chicago area are joining in a special biodiesel education event to help ensure clean air is available for residents of Illinois.

On July 17, Chicago Area Clean Cities and the B20 Club will jointly host Truck Stop Coffee Talk: The Truth About Biodiesel in Bolingbrook, Illinois. This comprehensive program will dive into the health, environmental and performance advantages of biodiesel-blended fuels as an alternative to traditional diesel fuels. A renewable and cost-saving fuel, biodiesel releases fewer emissions of harmful pollutants, ultimately reducing the risk of asthma and other respiratory diseases. It also reduces greenhouse gases by up to 86 percent.

To learn more about biodiesel, attendees will gather July 17 at the Greater Chicago I-55 Truck Plaza in Bolingbrook, which offers biodiesel as a premium fuel blend. Registration is free and open to Chicago area fleet managers, fuel providers and sustainability directors.

Event sponsors are Chicago Area Clean Cities (CACC), the B20 Club and Greater Chicago I-55 Truck Plaza. CACC is a designated U.S. Department of Energy Clean Cities Coalition. The B20 Club is a partnership of the Illinois Soybean Association (ISA) and American Lung Association that recognizes Illinois fleets operating on biodiesel blends of B20 or greater.

“Chicago Area Clean Cities works with a variety of transportation industry leaders, government officials and community members to promote the use of domestic fuels like biodiesel,” says John Walton, chair of Chicago Area Clean Cities. “Alongside the B20 Club, we’re dedicated to implementing sustainable and more environmentally friendly fuels throughout Illinois, saving energy, saving money, promoting the use of domestic fuels, and providing Illinois residents with clean air.”

During the July 17 event, Chicago-area fleets will share their experiences using biodiesel blends of B20 (20 percent biodiesel and 80 percent diesel) or greater, including best practices for using biodiesel in temperatures as low as 20 below zero. The program features a panel discussion with the Chicago Park District, National Biodiesel Board and Optimus Technologies about a bi-fuel system that allows the Park District to operate two refuse haulers on 100 percent biodiesel year-round.

“Biodiesel is a renewable fuel made from soybeans. Since Illinois is the largest producer of soybeans in the United States, we’re excited to help bring this biodiesel educational program to the Chicago area,” says Rebecca Richardson, ISA biodiesel lead.

To learn more about biodiesel, visit biodieseladvantage.com.

The ISA checkoff and membership programs represent more than 43,000 soybean farmers in Illinois. The checkoff funds market development, soybean production and profitability research, issues management analysis, communications and education. Membership and advocacy efforts support Illinois soybean farmer interests in local areas, Springfield and Washington, D.C. through the Illinois Soybean Growers. ISA programs are designed to ensure Illinois soy is the highest quality, most dependable, sustainable and competitive in the global marketplace. For more information, visit www.ilsoy.org.

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, contact:

Rachel Peabody
217-825-7654

Karen Potratz
262-563-5117
262-470-3709

Joe Koenig
708-613-5005

Clean Vehicle Tech to be Featured at Green Drives Conference on May 16

Monday, March 4th, 2019

CHICAGO, March 4, 2019 – Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, the Chicago Area Clean Cities Coalition invites commercial and government fleets, community leaders, and the public to attend its eighth annual Green Drives Conference and Expo on Thursday, May 16, at the Northern Illinois University Conference Center in Naperville, Illinois.

“Green Drives is one of the largest clean-vehicle conferences held in the Midwest,” said John Walton, chair, Chicago Area Clean Cities. “It is a must-attend event for private and public fleets, including commercial and municipal fleet managers, dealership personnel, small businesses, and clean-tech and clean-energy professionals.

“Attendees not only get a chance to network with experts from throughout the nation and the region, but they learn of first-hand experiences from fleets currently using alternative fuels and electric vehicles,” Walton said. “At the conference, we connect the people and technologies that help make sustainable transportation a reality. We also give attendees the chance to get behind the wheel of vehicles of all different sizes.”

Speakers and highlights of this year’s program include:

  • John Davis, the Emmy Award-winning host of “MotorWeek,” television’s longest-running automotive series, will once again serve as the program’s emcee.
  • Joseph Dominguez, CEO, ComEd, shines the light on electrification of passenger vehicles, fleet vehicles, and transit buses.
  • Gary Salemme, director, advanced engineering technology projects, Cummins.
  • Advanced technologies, electric vehicles, and alternative fuels will be showcased, including dozens of green vehicles and up to 25 indoor exhibitors.
  • GTI will host a track on “Getting Your Garage Ready for Alternative Fuels.”
  • A biodiesel breakout session by the B20 Club and Renewable Energy Group.
  • An alternative fuel and electric vehicle ride-and-drive.
  • Hydrogen as a future fuel will be discussed and a hydrogen-powered bus showcased.
  • Executives from automakers will discuss their newest vehicles and technologies.
  • Fleets will learn how to use cleaner, lower emissions fuels, while saving money.

“Whether you run a small or large business, are a fleet manager, manage a dealership or service garage, or work in the technology or energy, there will be topics of interest and networking opportunities for you at Green Drives,” Walton said. “This event provides you with the benefits of a multi-day conference in a one-day trade show-like setting.”

Green Drives is being held at Northern Illinois University’s Conference and Meetings Center, 1120 East Diehl Road, Naperville, IL 60563. To register for tickets, become a sponsor or exhibitor, visit https://2019greendrives.eventbrite.com.

Chicago Area Clean Cities, a nonprofit coalition focused on promoting clean transportation in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs, was founded on May 13, 1994. Celebrating its 25th anniversary 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.

“We’re thrilled that we’ll be able to hold our largest event of the year the same week as our 25th anniversary,” said Walton, who has been active with the coalition since 2001. “Over the past 25 years, our team has supported local actions to improve the environmental performance and efficiency of public and private fleets in the six-county Chicago metropolitan area.

“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 millions of dollars in grant funding for clean vehicles and alt-fuel stations. Proudly, we’ve helped dozens and dozens of fleets to convert to the use of cleaner, more sustainable alternative fuels and clean-vehicle technologies.”

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. The coalition also is a partner in the American Lung Association’s Midwest EVOLVE project, a seven-state program to educate consumers about the advantages of electric vehicles. To become involved, visit chicagocleancities.org.

 

News Media Contact:

Joe Koenig
Make Ideas Reality Communications
(708) 613-5005

Pace Named Clean Fuels Champion by Chicago Area Clean Cities

Tuesday, February 12th, 2019

CHICAGO, Feb. 12, 2019 – Pace Suburban Bus has been named Clean Fuels Champion by Chicago Area Clean Cities (CACC), a nonprofit coalition dedicated to promoting clean-vehicles and clean-air solutions for transportation in the Chicago area impacting nearly nine million people.

Pace provides public transit services to the residents of 284 municipalities in Cook, Will, DuPage, Kane, Lake, and McHenry counties, covering nearly 3,500 square miles and serving several tens of thousands of daily riders.

In 2018, Pace completed a compressed natural gas (CNG) station and facility build out to support their recent deployment of 91 CNG buses operating out of their South Division in Markham, Illinois. Of the 63 public transit agencies in Illinois, Pace is now one of only three to utilize CNG buses, timing the purchases to replace an aging fleet of diesel buses.

“We’re thrilled to be recognized as a Clean Fuels Champion by Chicago Area Clean Cities,” said Pace Chairman Rick Kwasneski. “Our new fleet of clean, low emissions CNG buses reduce air pollution without sacrificing performance. Our drivers and our customers love them.”

“This is a part of Pace’s vision of being a good steward of our environment,” Kwasneski said. “We also recently launched a fleet of buses that use ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel to reduce emissions. Combined with our fleet of CNG vehicles, we’re making our buses greener and improving air quality throughout the Chicagoland area.”

The Regional Transportation Authority (RTA), the financial and oversight body for the three transit agencies in northeastern Illinois; the Chicago Transit Authority, Metra, and Pace, teamed up with the Illinois Department of Transportation and Pace to help arrange $49 million in capital funding to allow Pace to purchase the new CNG buses. The CNG buses are anticipated to save $1.5 million per year in fuel and maintenance costs versus their diesel predecessors. In 2019, Pace is adding at least six new CNG buses.

Pace was awarded today at Chicago Area Clean Cities’ Annual Meeting at the Chicago Auto Show. The award has been given annually since 2001 to an individual, organization, or business that champions the promotion of alternative fuels and technologies to reduce vehicle emissions and reduce petroleum usage. Recent award recipients include the American Lung Association, Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, Testa Produce, and Ozinga Bros, Inc.

“Pace’s use of alternative fuels to reduce emissions in their fleet of transit buses is to be commended,” said John W. Walton, chair of the Chicago Area Clean Cities Coalition. “Their use of CNG to power buses is an example of a long term cost-effective solution for improving air quality and reducing harmful vehicle emissions. It’s a pleasure to honor the Pace team with this award.”

At the awards ceremony, CACC also named its Green Fleet Leadership Award winners. Those awarded include: ComEd, Chicago Park District, City of Chicago, Village of Downers Grove, Waste Management, Nicor Gas, Schwan’s, Chicago Transit Authority, and United Parcel Service. Each organization was recognized for its successful use of vehicles with alternative fuels and clean-vehicle technologies.

Jones Lang LaSalle/Aon and Prudential Towers received the coalition’s “All-In Award,” to recognized its 100 percent all-electric shuttle bus fleet. The buses shuttle hundreds of commuters every workday from Chicago’s Metra train stations to the Aon Center and Prudential Plaza (JLL manages both buildings), then back again at the end of the day before parking underneath Wacker Drive to charge overnight.

About Chicago Area Clean Cities

Celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2019, Chicago Area Clean Cities is a nonprofit coalition focused on promoting clean-vehicles and clean-air solutions for transportation in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs. CACC is one of more than 90 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 fuels and clean-vehicle technologies, reduce idling, and improve fuel efficiency 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. CACC also is a partner in Midwest EVOLVE, a seven-state project to educate consumers about the advantages of electric vehicles. To get involved, visit ChicagoCleanCities.org.

About Pace

Pace is Chicagoland’s suburban bus and regional paratransit provider. Pace’s family of public transportation services also includes vanpool, rideshare matching, community-based transportation programs, and, soon, Pulse, Pace’s new arterial rapid transit network. Learn more at PaceBus.com/Pulse.

 

News Media Contacts:

Joe Koenig
Make Ideas Reality Communications
(708) 613-5005

Maggie Daly Skogsbakken
Pace Suburban Bus
(847) 228-4222

 

Chicago Area Clean Cities Recognizes Top Green Fleets

Tuesday, February 12th, 2019

CHICAGO, Feb. 12, 2019 – The Chicago Area Clean Cities Coalition today announced its Green Fleet Leadership Award winners, recognizing companies and government agencies that are leading in the adoption of alternative fuels and clean-vehicle technologies for their fleets.

This year’s winners include: ComEd, Chicago Park District, Chicago Transit Authority, City of Chicago, Village of Downers Grove, Jones Lang LaSalle/Aon and Prudential Towers, Nicor Gas, Schwan’s, United Parcel Service, and Waste Management. Each organization was recognized for its successful use of vehicles with alternative fuels and clean-vehicle technologies.

The Green Fleet Leadership Award winners were named at the coalition’s annual meeting at Hyatt McCormick Place. The awards are given annually to commercial or government fleets that take actions to locally reduce petroleum consumption and improve air quality, such as by using cleaner-burning alternative-fuel vehicles, electric vehicles or other advanced technologies.

“The commercial and government fleets that we’re awarding are being recognized for being the best in their fuel category in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and gasoline gallon equivalents of fuel,” said Samantha Bingham, coordinator, Chicago Area Clean Cities. “Many also are being recognized for year over year improvements. Their efforts are better for the environment by reducing harmful emissions, which improves Chicago air quality, ensuring that the air we breathe is cleaner for all.

“The fleets we’re honoring all operate in the Chicagoland area and are terrific examples for others to follow to learn about the advantages of clean-vehicle and alternative-fuel technologies,” Bingham said.

Green Fleet Leadership Award winners by category include:

Greenhouse Gas Reduction Award

  • Commonwealth Edison Company (ComEd):ComEd is the primary electric utility in the Chicago area. A unit of Chicago-based Exelon Corporation, ComEd is the nation’s leading competitive energy provider, with approximately 10 million customers. In 2017, ComEd reduced its emissions of greenhouse gases by nearly 5,000 tons via its use of biodiesel fuel and electric vehicles to power its fleet.

Alternative Fuel Awards

Biodiesel

  • ComEd: In 2017, the company reduced nearly 370,000 gasoline-gallon equivalents (GGEs) of fuel via its fleet of 1,750 trucks using cleaner-burning biodiesel fuel. ComEd provides service to approximately 4 million customers across northern Illinois, 70 percent of the state’s population.
  • Chicago Park District: The Chicago Park District has a fleet of more than 550 vehicles, including nearly 200 vehicles that use a 10 to 20 percent blend of biodiesel, 56 that use up to 50 percent biodiesel, 80 that use E85 fuel, more than 50 hybrid-electric vehicles, and three that use clean-burning compressed natural gas (CNG). Through their sustainability efforts, the Chicago Park District reduces an equivalent of 19,000 gasoline gallons of fuel on average per year.

E85 Fuel

  • The City of Chicago: The city has been a leader in the use of E85 fuel. In 2017, the city’s fleet used more than 750,000 gallons of E85 (ethanol) instead of traditional gasoline or diesel fuel. The city operates a fleet of 2,600 vehicles compatible with E85 fuel. Chicago also continues to increase its sustainability efforts and has committed to follow and adopt the guidelines of the Paris Agreement. Chicago is in the process of adding nearly 200 electric vehicles to the city’s fleet and installing DC Fast Charging Stations and Level 2 chargers. Chicago expects to have a passenger fleet that is 25 percent EV by 2023.
  • Village of Downers Grove: The village in the western suburbs of Chicago had the greatest reduction in gasoline gallons equivalents of fuel of any of Chicago Area Clean Cities member fleets. It saved 22,500 gallons of fuel in 2017, a 100 percent reduction over 2016. This not only reduced greenhouse gas emissions, but it also improved local air quality.

Compressed Natural Gas (CNG)

  • Waste Management: Based in Houston, Texas, Waste Management is the leading provider of comprehensive waste management services in North America. In 2017, Waste Management’s compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles displaced 1.7 million GGEs of petroleum-based fuel in the Chicagoland area by using cleaner-burning CNG fuel. Across the U.S., Waste Management’s fleet includes more than 6,000 natural gas trucks, the largest heavy-duty truck fleet of its kind in North America.
  • Nicor Gas: Nicor Gas is the largest natural gas distribution company in Illinois, serving 2.2 million customers in the northern third of the state. The company operates more than 2,250 fleet vehicles and pieces of equipment. Approximately 45 percent of the fleet operates using a variety of alternative fuels, including E85, biodiesel and CNG. In 2018, the company displaced nearly 990,000 equivalent gallons of petroleum with alternative fuels.

Liquid Propane Gas

  • Schwan’s Company: Based in Minnesota, Schwan’s Company is a privately held business that manufactures and markets quality foods through home-delivery, retail-grocery and food-service channels. Its many popular brands include Red Baron®, Tony’s®and Freschetta®pizza, Smith’s®and Edwards®desserts, Villa Prima® pizza and Minh® Asian appetizers, and Schwan’s®fine frozen foods. In the Chicago area in 2017, Schwan’s reduced its use of fuel by an equivalent of nearly 95,000 GGEs, a 58 percent increase in GGE reduction.

Electric and Hybrid-Electric Vehicles

  • Chicago Transit Authority (CTA): On an average weekday, CTA provides approximately 1.6 million rides on its transit bus and rail systems, which cover the City of Chicago and 35 surrounding suburbs. The CTA operatesnearly 240 hybrid-electric transit buses, two all-electric transit buses, and 24 hybrid electric passenger vehicles. In 2017, the CTA’s hybrid and electric fleet reduced its fuel consumption by more than 110,000 GGEs using these cleaner electric and hybrid-electric vehicles.
  • United Parcel Service: UPS operates one of the industry’s largest private alternative fuel and advanced technology fleets, a “rolling laboratory” of approximately 9,300 vehicles that drives more than 1 million cleaner miles each business day. In 2017, the company tripled its GGE reductions in the Chicagoland area to more than 75,000. UPS operates 187 (117 LNG, 50 hydraulic hybrid and 20 hybrid-electric) alternative-fuel vehicles in the Chicago region, including 20 electric and hybrid-electric vehicles.

All-in Award

  • Jones Lang LaSalle/Aon and Prudential Towers received the coalition’s “All-In Award,” to recognize its 100 percent all-electric shuttle bus fleet. The buses shuttle hundreds of commuters every workday from Chicago’s Metra train stations to the Aon Center and Prudential Plaza (JLL manages both buildings), then back again at the end of the day before parking underneath Wacker Drive to charge overnight.

CACC also recognized Pace Suburban Bus, Chicagoland’s suburban bus and regional paratransit provider, as its Clean Fuels Champion for its deployment of more than 90 clean-burning CNG buses and fueling stations. The awards ceremony was held to coincidence with the 2019 Chicago Auto Show.

At the meeting, Tony Lindsay of the Gas Technology Institute was honored with a “Chairman’s Award” for his 25 years of service to the coalition. Walton, who started working with CACC in 2001 when he converted the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County’s fleet to alternative fuels, received a Lifetime Appreciation Award. Walton serves as CACC’s chair, and Lindsay is Board Member Emeritus.

Chicago Area Clean Cities, celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, is a nonprofit coalition focused on promoting clean transportation in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs. 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.

“Over the past 25 years, our team has supported local actions to improve the environmental performance and efficiency of public and private fleets in the six-county Chicago metro area,” Walton said. “Our member fleets have reduced hundreds of millions of gallons of petroleum and millions of tons in greenhouse-gas emissions. Through Drive Clean Chicago and other grant programs, we’ve worked to help distribute millions in grant funding for clean vehicles and alternative-fuel stations. Proudly, we also have helped many fleets convert to the use of cleaner, more sustainable alternative fuels and clean-vehicle technologies.”

The coalition is one of more than 90 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.

CACC also is a partner in Midwest EVOLVE, a seven-state project to educate consumers about the advantages of electric vehicles, and is hosting electric vehicle test drives for consumers at this week’s Chicago Auto Show. Learn more at chicagocleancities.org.

 

News Media Contact:

Joe Koenig
Make Ideas Reality Communications
(708) 613-5005
Twitter: @ChiCleanCities

Electric Vehicle Test Drives Offered at 2019 Chicago Auto Show

Tuesday, February 5th, 2019

CHICAGO, Feb. 5, 2019 – Consumers attending the 2019 Chicago Auto Show, Feb. 9-18, will get a chance to test-drive electric and hybrid-electric plug-in vehicles, including the 2019 Nissan LEAF and 2019 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid.

The Chicago Area Clean Cities Coalition, a nonprofit coalition focused on clean-transportation solutions for the six-county Chicago area, is hosting an EV Experience where attendees can learn more about plug-in vehicles and charging from industry experts and local electric vehicle owners. This experience is made possible via the American Lung Association’s Midwest EVOLVE program.

“We invite the curious, the doubters, and the advocates to participate,” said Samantha Bingham, coordinator, Chicago Area Clean Cities. “For many consumers, this is the first time they’ve had a chance to drive electric. After taking a test drive, drivers discover that electric vehicles have outstanding performance and are better for the environment, lung health, and potentially their pocketbook.”

Attendees who would like to test-drive vehicles should register during auto show days, Feb. 9-18, at the Chicago Area Clean Cities tent in McCormick Place’s South Building, Gate 2, near the escalators. The information about EVs and test-drives will be available weekends 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and weekdays 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. On Feb. 18 test-drives will conclude at 3 p.m.

Midwest EVOLVE, a partnership between the American Lung Association and Clean Cities coalitions in seven Midwestern states, emphasizes the clean-air advantages, cost-savings, and performance of electric vehicles. The project was introduced at the 2017 Chicago Auto Show, and test drives also were conducted at the 2018 show.

Midwest EVOLVE, which stands for Electric Vehicle Opportunities: Learning, eVents, Experience, has more than 60 partners, including Argonne National Laboratory, PlugInConnect, automakers, utilities, state agencies, municipalities, dealerships, and dealer associations.

As a part of the project, EVs are showcased at community events, auto shows, workplace-charging seminars, and ride-and-drives in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, and Wisconsin. The events help to educate consumers about finding a vehicle that fits their needs and provide information about the ease of charging vehicles at home, at work, or at public charging stations.

The Midwest EVOLVE project is based upon work supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), under Award Number DE-EE0007743.

To learn more or locate Midwest EVOLVE events, visit MidwestEVOLVE.org or follow EVOLVE via TwitterFacebook, or LinkedIn.

Chicago Area Clean Cities (CACC), which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, is a nonprofit coalition focused on promoting clean transportation in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs.

The coalition hosts its Annual Meeting, Green Fleet Leadership Awards, and 25th Anniversary Kickoff Celebration on Tuesday, Feb. 12, at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place. Harold Wimmer, National President and CEO, American Lung Association will speak at the program about the work of the American Lung Association and the importance of clean vehicles and clean transportation to the environment, clean air, and lung health. He also will highlight the Lung Association’s green-fleet and clean-vehicle projects and initiatives. To register for the event, visit https://chicagocleancities.org/events.

CACC is one of more than 90 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 Chicago Auto Show (Feb. 9-18) is the largest auto show in North America, spanning more than one million square feet of production, concept, and exotic vehicle exhibit space. For tickets, visit ChicagoAutoShow.com.

 

News Media Contact:

Joe Koenig
Make Ideas Reality Communications
(708) 613-5005

 

Electric Vehicle Project Charges Ahead in Midwest, Gives Consumers a Chance to Test Drive EVs

Thursday, January 31st, 2019

SAINT PAUL, Minn., Jan. 31, 2019 – More than 90,000 people have participated in the American Lung Association’s Midwest EVOLVE project, a seven-state program launched two years ago to promote the performance and clean-air advantages of electric vehicles.

Midwest EVOLVE and its partners have held or participated in more than 190 events across the Midwest with just over 4,500 test drives completed over the past two years. The project is a collaborative effort between the American Lung Association and Clean Cities coalitions in seven Midwestern states. Dozens of electric vehicle events are planned for this year.

“Consumers have so many preconceptions about electric vehicles,” said Lisa Thurstin, coordinator of the Twin Cities Clean Cities Coalition, which oversees Midwest EVOLVE. “This is especially true in the Midwest, where EVs aren’t as heavily promoted as they are in other parts of the U.S.

“At Midwest EVOLVE events, we get people behind the wheel for test drives,” Thurstin said. “That usually changes people’s perceptions. They realize that electric vehicles have outstanding performance and are better for the environment, clean-air, and lung health.”

According to Thurstin, Midwest EVOLVE’s data shows that more than 20 percent of consumers who attend an electric vehicle ride and drive hosted by one of the projects’ partners purchases a plug-in electric or hybrid-electric vehicle within six months.

As a part of the program, electric vehicles are showcased at community events, auto shows, workplace-charging seminars, and ride-and-drives in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, and Wisconsin. The events help to educate consumers about finding a vehicle that fits their needs and provide information about the ease of charging vehicles at home, at work, or at public charging stations.

“So far, thousands of people have received a chance to take test-drives of EVs at our Midwest EVOLVE events,” said Thurstin, who assembled the team of Clean Cities coalitions that have been partnering on the EVOLVE project for more than two years.

“We have many more events planned for 2019, including test-drives at upcoming auto shows,” Thurstin added. “The recent debuts of several vehicles with outstanding performance also makes this a compelling time to drive electric, so make sure to visit our website for details about events we’re hosting this year.”

Midwest EVOLVE, which stands for Electric Vehicle Opportunities: Learning, eVents, Experience, has more than 60 partners, including Argonne National Laboratory, PlugInConnect, automakers, utilities, state agencies, municipalities, dealerships, and dealer associations.

Clean Cities coalitions working together on the program include: Chicago Area Clean Cities, Greater Lansing Area Clean Cities, North Dakota Clean Cities, Twin Cities Clean Cities, South Shore Clean Cities, and Wisconsin Clean Cities.

The Midwest EVOLVE project is based upon work supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), under Award Number DE-EE0007743.

To learn more or locate Midwest EVOLVE events, visit MidwestEVOLVE.org or follow EVOLVE via TwitterFacebook, or LinkedIn.

 

 

 

Chicago Area Clean Cities Elects Leaders in Clean Air, Clean Vehicles to its Board

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019

CHICAGO, Ill., Jan. 22, 2019 – Chicago Area Clean Cities (CACC) today announced the election of representatives from the American Lung Association, Nissan, Cummins, Inc., Exelon Corporation, and the Forest Preserves of Cook County to its executive board.

New CACC board members include:

  • Angela Tin, national senior director, Clean Air Initiatives, American Lung Association
  • Cynthia Maves, electric vehicle fleet business development manager, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest Regions, Nissan North America
  • Matthew Carr, general manager, Branch Sales, Cummins, Inc.
  • Erica Tsypin, co-founder, Mobility, Exelorate Growth, Exelon Corporation
  • Tom Thompson, fleet manager, Forest Preserve District of Cook County

“We are thrilled to welcome Angela, Cynthia, Matt, Erica, and Tom to our executive board,” said John Walton, chair, Chicago Area Clean Cities. “As ambassadors for sustainability and clean air, each of them has been very active in our coalition for a number of years. They’ve helped our member fleets to make a positive impact on the environment in the Chicago area.”

Prior to the election of new board members, Tony Lindsay of the Gas Technology Institute and Rich Moore of General Motors stepped down from their long-time board positions due to professional transitions.

“Tony and Rich have served our coalition with honor and distinction for many years,” Walton said. “In fact, Tony has been a member of the board since the coalition’s founding 25 years ago in 1994. Without Tony and Rich, our coalition wouldn’t be the success it is today.”

Lindsay and Moore will continue working with CACC as board member emeritus, along with Doug Dittrich. Moore and Dittrich recently retired from General Motors after distinguished careers in fleet operations and had worked with CACC as board members for many years.

Other members of the coalition’s board include:

  • Chair: John W. Walton, principal consultant, Advance Fueling Consultants
  • Secretary: Marcy Rood, environmental transportation analyst, Argonne National Laboratory
  • Treasurer: Samantha Bingham, clean transportation program director, Chicago Department of Transportation
  • Les Faul, operations manager, Fleet Services, ComEd
  • Chris Lyon, director of fleet relations, NTEA
  • John Schwab, CEO, Dual Fuel Systems, Inc.

CACC’s steering committee includes:

  • Tim Milburn, partner, Green Ways 2Go
  • Marc Rowe, senior manager, business development, Trillium
  • Ted Barnes, director, research and development, Gas Technology Institute
  • Lynn Stafford, vice president of business development, STAG USA
  • Bob Wisz, president, CNG Calumet and former owner of Doreen’s Pizza

Chicago Area Clean Cities, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, is a nonprofit coalition focused on promoting clean transportation in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs.

“Over the past 25 years, our team has supported local actions to improve the environmental performance and efficiency of public and private fleets in the six-county Chicago metro area,” Walton said. “Our member fleets have reduced hundreds of millions of gallons of petroleum and millions of tons in greenhouse-gas emissions. Through Drive Clean Chicago and other grant programs, we’ve worked to help distribute millions in grant funding for clean vehicles and alternative-fuel stations. Proudly, we also have helped many fleets convert to the use of cleaner, more sustainable alternative fuels and clean-vehicle technologies.”

CACC’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.

CACC is one of more than 90 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. CACC also is a partner in Midwest EVOLVE, a seven-state project to educate consumers about the advantages of plug-in electric vehicles.

Chicago Area Clean Cities hosts its Annual Meeting, Green Fleet Leadership Awards, and 25th Anniversary Kickoff Celebration at the Chicago Auto Show on Tuesday, Feb. 12. To learn more, visit https://chicagocleancities.org/events.

 

News Media Contact:

Joe Koenig
Make Ideas Reality Communications
(708) 613-5005

Chicago Area Clean Cities and West Chicago Fire Protection District Provide Alternative Fuels Training for First Responders

Friday, November 9th, 2018

WEST CHICAGO, Ill., Nov. 9, 2018 – Chicago Area Clean Cities and the West Chicago Fire Protection District teamed up today to provide training for first responders to learn how to handle incidents involving alternative-fuel vehicles. The hands-on training allowed participants to learn how to respond to emergency events via simulated emergencies, using alt-fuel vehicles provided by local fleets.

“Alternative-fuel vehicles are becoming more popular for many reasons,” said John Walton, chair, Chicago Area Clean Cities. “They have lower tailpipe emissions, they reduce the use of petroleum, they are quieter, and they can help fleets save money.

“With the growing number of alternative fuel and electric vehicles on the roads, it is important for first responders to understand the properties of fuels such as natural gas, propane, and ethanol, as well as the battery technologies used in today’s electric vehicles,” Walton said. “They are different than traditional gasoline and diesel fuels.

“For example, with electric vehicles, emergency responders may need to know where to cut power wires to disable high-voltage circuits,” Walton added. “Gaseous fuels are invisible. Propane is heavier than air, and natural gas lighter than air, so awareness of how to react relates to the fuel properties. The locations of fuel shutoffs on gaseous-fuel vehicles are different than liquid-fuel vehicles, as well.”

The program, which was developed in concert with Green Ways 2Go, an alternative fuels consulting company, was held at the West Chicago, Illinois Fire Department Training Center. The goal of the class was to highlight the fuel-based differences when dealing with alternative fuel (e.g. natural gas, propane, electricity) incidents, compared to gasoline and diesel. For first responders, this focused on fuel properties and behaviors, vehicles and infrastructure.

Twenty-six firefighters listened to a brief orientation followed by two-and-a-half hours of hand-on training examining alternative-fuel vehicles in the training center’s shop, with guidance on the key differentiating features. As a part of the training, first responders also participate in online, self-guided training provided by the National Fire Protection Association.

Vehicles at the program included large compressed natural gas (CNG) trucks from Waste Management and Ozinga, a new electric Nissan LEAF, a 2014 Chevrolet Volt Hybrid, several propane and CNG vehicles, a Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid, and a propane lawn mower. The group was able to learn where to locate critical safeties unique to each vehicle in the event of a crash or a fire and how to mitigate the risks.

The presenter, Tim Milburn, is a partner with Green Ways 2Go and a member of the Chicago Area Clean Cities Steering Team. If interested in more information, click here to contact Tim.

Chicago Area Clean Cities (CACC) is a nonprofit coalition focused on promoting clean transportation in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs. CACC is one of more than 90 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 area, including Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will counties. To become involved or learn more, visit https://chicagocleancities.org.