Nationwide: Southeast Propane Autogas Development Program Brings 1200 Propane Vehicles to the Road

Project Overview
Positive Impact: DOE supports large-scale public-private deployment of propane vehicles in the United States.
Location: Nationwide
Partners: Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy; Virginia Clean Cities; Blossman Gas; Alliance Autogas; James Madison University; American Alternative Fuel; Propane Education and Research Council; 28 Clean Cities Fleets
EERE Investment: $8.6 million
Clean Energy Sector: Sustainable transportationPDF

The Southeast Propane Autogas Development Program, an $8.6 million Clean Cities Recovery Act project, finished bringing 1,200 propane vehicles and 11 new stations to support them to the road in October 2013. The Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy led the project, with support from Virginia Clean Cities, Blossman Gas, Alliance Autogas, the Propane Education and Research Council, and four other Clean Cities coalitions. The Southeast Propane Autogas Development Program has 28 fleets throughout the Southeast participating, including taxi, shuttle, and police fleets—many of which are small businesses. The project is also working with nine conversion centers to convert vehicles to propane, creating a network of qualified converters who can support future expansion of propane vehicles. Project participants will reduce 3.9 million gasoline gallon equivalents and 7.8 million pounds of greenhouse gas emissions annually.

The participating fleets have already seen a variety of benefits. In particular, Community Counseling Services, a network of community mental health centers in Mississippi, received assistance to help convert 29 vans to propane and install on-site fueling. In addition, the project helped the organization to work with other project participants to gain access to fueling stations throughout its service territory.  Because it provides transportation for hundreds of clients a week, fuel costs were impacting the services provided.  But, with the propane vehicles, Community Counseling Services is saving more than $1.50 per gallon on fuel, which adds up to more than $60,000 per year in savings. The organization is also using 30,000 fewer gallons of gasoline each year. In addition to the vehicle conversions, the project also taught the organization’s technicians and drivers how to safely maintain and fuel the vehicles.

The Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) develops and deploys efficient and environmentally friendly highway transportation technologies that will enable America to use less petroleum. These technologies will provide Americans with greater freedom of mobility and energy security, while lowering costs and reducing impacts on the environment.

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