This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

April 29, 2009

DOE Offers $300 Million in Recovery Act Funds for Clean Cities Program

On Earth Day, Vice President Joe Biden announced the availability of $300 million in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for state and local governments and transit authorities to expand the nation's fleet of clean, sustainable vehicles and the fueling infrastructure necessary to support them. The Clean Cities Alternative Fuel and Advanced Technology Vehicles Pilot Program will support at least 30 projects involving alternative fuels or advanced vehicles. Technologies eligible to be funded include a number of different light- and heavy-duty vehicles, including hybrid, plug-in hybrid electric, hydraulic hybrid, electric, fuel cell, and compressed natural gas vehicles. In addition, projects can support refueling infrastructure for alternative fuels, including biofuels and natural gas. Other efforts eligible for funds include public awareness campaigns and training programs on alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles and infrastructure. The program requires a 50% cost share from participants.

The vice president announced the funding during a visit to a Landover, Maryland, maintenance and training facility of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority. Better known as simply "Metro," the authority provides transit services to the metropolitan area in and around Washington, D.C. The authority has a fleet of 1,500 buses, including 74 hybrid-electric buses and 461 that run on compressed natural gas, and Metro plans to have nearly 500 more hybrid-electric buses by 2012. Vice President Biden was joined at the event by Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley, who last year committed to convert the entire Maryland Transit Administration bus fleet to hybrid-electric buses by 2014. Maryland has already accelerated its purchase of hybrid-electric buses with the help of Recovery Act funds. See the DOE press release and the Clean Cities solicitation on the DOE e-Center Web site.