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Green Fleets Policy

Faced with the impact of rising fuel costs on the city budget, local leaders are realizing the importance of "going green" with their vehicle fleets. The City of Washington is doing its part by implementing a "Green Fleets Policy", where city owned and operated cars and trucks can use alternative fuels and take advantage of emissions reduction technologies. These programs cut costs by reducing dependency on high-priced gasoline and diesel fuels through the introduction of efficient and environmentally friendly alternative fuel sources.

Section 1 Basis for Policy

1. The total energy bill from June 2008 to May 2009 for the City of Washington was $1.899 million and is projected to increase by 3.9% percent to about $1.974 million by May 2010.

2. Departments in the City of Washington operate vehicle fleets that account for about 42% percent of the City's total energy bill.

3. The City of Washington recognizes that energy use associated with the operation of its motor vehicle fleets exacerbates local air quality problems and results in greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global climate change.

4. The City of Washington recognizes that its departments have a significant role to play in improving local air quality and reducing greenhouse gas emissions by improving the energy efficiency of its fleets and reducing emissions from fleet operations.

5. The City of Washington recognizes that by improving the energy efficiency of its fleets significant monetary savings will result in the long term.

6. The City of Washington wishes to exercise its power as a participant in the marketplace to ensure that purchases and expenditures of public monies are made in a manner consistent with the policy of improving local air quality and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

7. The City of Washington wishes to establish a "Green Fleets" policy addressing the management, operation, and procurement of fleet vehicles under the control of the City of Washington in order to improve the energy efficiency of its fleets and reduce emissions from its fleets.

Section 2 Definitions

1. "Passenger Vehicle" means any motor vehicle designed primarily for the transportation of persons and having a design capacity of twelve persons or less.

2. "Light Duty Truck" means any motor vehicle, with a manufacturer's gross vehicle weight rating of 6,000 pounds or less, which is designed primarily for purposes of transportation of property or is a derivative of such a vehicle, or is available with special features enabling off-street or off-highway operation and use.

3. "Medium Duty Vehicle" means any vehicle having a manufacturer's gross vehicle weight rating of 14,000 pounds or less and which is not a light-duty truck or passenger vehicle.

4. "Heavy Duty Vehicle" means any motor vehicle, licensed for use on roadways, having a manufacturer's gross vehicle weight rating greater than 14,000 pounds.

5. "Electric Drive-train Vehicle" means any vehicle that employs an electric drive-train and motor as its primary means of motive force. The vehicle can be powered by fuel cells, electric batteries, petroleum- or alternatively-fueled electric generators, or any combination thereof.

6. "Alternative Fuel" means any fuel that is substantially non-petroleum in nature, is not gasoline or diesel, and is defined as an alternative fuel by the U.S. Department of Energy through the authority granted by the Energy Policy Act of 1992.

7. "Bi-Fuel Vehicle" means any motor vehicle designed to operate on two (2) fuels, one of which is an alternative fuel, but not on a mixture of fuels. Compressed natural gas or gasoline; two fuel tanks

8. Flex-fuel Vehicle: Designed to operate on either up to E85 or gasoline. Single compartment fueling tank

9. Bio-diesel (B20) is diesel blended with 20 percent soy oil.

Section 3 Fleet Inventory

1.  In order to establish a baseline of data so that the "Green Fleets" policy can be established, implemented, and monitored each department and/or agency fleet manager shall develop an inventory and analysis of the fleet vehicles within that department or agency as of the close of fiscal year September, 2009. To ensure consistency in reporting the City of Washington will supply a single, pre-coded Excel spreadsheet. This inventory shall include:

a. Number of vehicles classified by the model year, make, model, engine size, vehicle identification number (VIN), and drive-train type (2-wheel drive, 4-wheel drive), and the rated vehicle weight and classification (light-duty, medium-duty, heavy-duty);

b. Miles per gallon (or gallon equivalent) per vehicle;

c. Type of fuel (or power source, e.g., electricity) used;

d. Average cost per gallon (or gallon equivalent) of fuel;

e. Average fuel cost per mile;

f.  Annual miles driven per vehicle;

g. Total fuel (or power) consumption per vehicle;

h. Vehicle function (i.e. the tasks associated with the vehicle's use);

i.   Carbon Dioxide (CO2) calculations based on gallons (or gallon equivalent) of fuel consumed.

2.  Fleet managers from City departments shall be responsible for providing these baseline data in a reliable and verifiable manner.

Section 4 "Green Fleets" Policy

1. It shall be the policy of the City of Washington to purchase, lease, or otherwise obtain the most energy efficient vehicles possible that meet the operational needs of the department for which the vehicles are intended.

2. It shall be the policy of the City of Washington to manage and operate its fleets in a manner that is energy efficient and minimizes emissions.

3. The City of Washington shall decrease its fuel expenditures for its vehicle fleets by a total of 10 percent by the year 2012, adjusting for inflation and relative to the baseline data established for year 2009 through the fleet inventory taken incompliance with Section 3 above. (Variable: Cost of fuel times amount of fuel)

4. The City of Washington shall reduce the emission of carbon dioxide (CO2) from its fleet by a total of 15 percent by the year 2012, relative to the baseline data established for year 2009 in the fleet inventory taken in compliance with Section 3 above (diesel per gallon times (x) 22.2lbs CO2 or gas per gallon times 19.4lbs CO2),

Section 5 "Green Fleets" Policy Strategies

1. In order to accomplish the goals stated in Section 4 above, the City of Washington shall modify procurement procedures, implement policies, conduct reviews, and take other actions as outlined in sub-sections (2) through (12) below.

2. Include a minimum efficiency standard in miles per gallon (or gallon equivalent) for each vehicle class for which the City has a procurement specification for and include such a standard in any new vehicle procurement specification.

3. Include a minimum emissions standard for each vehicle class for which the City has a procurement specification for and include such a standard in any new vehicle procurement specifications. This emission standard shall be based on North Carolina emission standards which are the Federal Tier 2 standards comprised of Bins 1-8.

4. Ensure that a minimum of 20 percent of the passenger vehicles purchase, leased, or otherwise obtained within a fiscal year by the City of Washington are alternate fuel or bi-fuel vehicles.

5. Review all vehicle procurement specifications and modify them as necessary to ensure that the specifications are written in a manner flexible enough to allow the purchase or lease of alternatively fueled or electric drive-train vehicles.

6. Review every new vehicle purchase request and modify them as necessary to ensure that the vehicle class to which the requesting vehicle belongs is appropriate for the duty requirements that the vehicle will be called upon to perform.

7. Review the fleet inventory taken in Section 3 above to identify older vehicles that are used infrequently (or not at all), as well as those vehicles that are disproportionately inefficient, and schedule their elimination or replacement.

8. Implement an anti-idling policy prohibiting City employees from idling City owned or operated vehicles for an excessive period of time.

9. Equip vehicles with an anti-idling device.

10. Implement an incentive program for City employees to drive efficiently and utilize efficient vehicle operating techniques.

11. Prohibit the use of non-alternative fuels in bi-fuel vehicles for more than 50 percent of the time that they are operated within the City.

12. Maintain vehicle at optimal efficiency by reviewing current maintenance schedule for all fleet vehicles and increasing maintenance wherever cost-effective benefits will accrue as a result.

Section 6 Monitoring of the "Green Fleets" Policy

1. In order to ensure compliance with the goals outlined in Section 4 above, as well as to monitor the actions outlined in Section 5 above, a "Green Fleets" Review Committee is to be formed. The Office of the Mayor/County Executive will appoint the members of this review committee, with one representative from each of the following Departments and/or Agencies:

a. Finance Department

b. Recreation Department

c. Purchasing Department

d. Public Works Department/Agency

e. Electric Department

f.  Police Department

g. Fire Department

2. The "Green Fleets" Review Committee shall also include the City Manager and a City Council Member, as determined by the City Council. The Council Member will be a non-voting member of the Review Committee.

3. On an annual basis, Department fleet managers shall submit a draft "Green Fleets" plan to the Green Fleets Review Committee detailing how vehicle procurement, fleet operations, and employee travel activity are intended to conform to the "Green Fleets" policy and the "Green Fleets" strategies outlined in Section 5. The "Green Fleets" plan will also include, as an appendix or addendum, an updated fleet vehicle inventory list in the same format as the fleet vehicle inventory completed in Section3.

4. Each "Green Fleet" plan shall be reviewed by the Review Committee for overall conformity with the "Green Fleets" policy and for completeness in addressing the "Green Fleets" strategies outlined in Section 5. Inadequate plans shall be returned to the submitting Department for revisal and discussion with the Review Committee.

5. Any appeal of the Review Committee's decisions must be made in writing to the Committee accompanied by appropriate documentation. Valid reasons for an appeal include unavailability of appropriate fleet vehicles, incremental costs in excess of the full life-cycle savings that would accrue from the acquisition of a given vehicle as determined by the Finance Department, and the primacy of a given vehicle's mission to public safety or a similar area judged to be applicable by the Review Committee.

6. Approval of vehicle procurement requests for each Department is contingent upon a satisfactory recommendation from the "Green Fleets" committee as to the merit of the Department's "Green Fleets" plan.

7. The most innovative "Green Fleets" plan implemented shall receive recognition in an annual award to the Department submitting the winning plan. The "Green Fleets" review committee shall determine the recipient of the award during the annual "Green Fleets" plan review process.