2016 Annual Awards Reception

April 5, 2016 

Western Washington Clean Cities’ friends and partners gathered on April 5 for an evening reception at the Green Transportation Summit & Expo to celebrate 2015’s petroleum reduction accomplishments, including:

  • Our region’s collective efforts displaced over 19 million gallons of petroleum.
  • This displacement translated into nearly 100,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions avoided. That’s the equivalent of removing 21,000 cars from our roads for one year!
  • We observed year over year growth in propane autogas, biodiesel, ethanol, and electric vehicles use among our stakeholders.

In addition to collective accomplishments, we recognized the fleets, organizations and individuals who are movers & shakers in our Coalition – and really kickin’ gas!

UWGeorge Donegan – University of Washington

Best Performance by a Public Fleet: The University of Washington

This fleet is a founding member of our coalition (member since 1998!). Over the years, they have steadily been exploring a variety of fuels and technologies, all with a goal of helping the organization achieve climate neutrality by 2050.  In 2015, they rolled out two big initiatives:

  • First, they updated an existing fuel dispenser and tank to be ethanol (E85) compatible and began taking delivery of E85 flex fuel, allowing them to generate big petroleum reductions from their fleet of 265 flex fuel vehicles. With only half a year of use under their belt they’ve already displaced nearly 20,000 gallons of gasoline with flex fuel. They are, in fact, one of the largest users of E85 in our membership
  • Second, they deployed 14 new Ford Focus EVs and 45 charging stations for fleet and campus use.
Beyond those major initiatives they are also using biodiesel and rightsized 50% of their replacement vehicles for the year.

PotelcoxMark Swanson, Steve Steedly – Potelco

Best Performance by a Private Fleet: Potelco

Our winner in this category recognizes the accomplishments of an organization whose efforts really began in 2014 and hit full swing last year. Potelco saw an opportunity to reduce petroleum use and costs and took a leadership position to make it happen. They have now successfully deployed what is believed to be the first liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueled Ford F-450s in the country, and are the first fleet in Washington to begin using LNG in transportation. They added nine LNG vehicles to their fleet in 2015, bringing their total to 157 in Washington. Those vehicles displaced nearly 250,000 gallons of petroleum last year.

PortofSeattleStephanie Meyn, Fred Felleman, Port Commissioner – Port of Seattle

Best Achievement in Electricity: The Port of Seattle, Aviation Division

It took a five-year effort, but now the Port of Seattle’s Aviation Division is reducing a serious amount of petroleum through electricity. With the help of a Recovery Act grant and an innovative partnership with a major airline, the Port installed 159 charging stations and deployed 203 electric ground support vehicles. Last year, the electric ground support equipment displaced 79,000 gallons of petroleum. In addition, the organization made its foray into on-road electrification with the purchase of three light-duty battery electric vehicles.

RecologyCleanscapesForrest Gary, Kevin Kelly – Recology Cleanscapes

Best Achievement in Natural Gas: Recology CleanScapes

This fleet has steadily built up its deployment and use of compressed natural gas (CNG). In 2015 Recology CleanScapes added ten new CNG vehicles, including the replacement of two legacy diesel vehicles. Now 70% of their fleet runs on CNG. With their fleet growing over the years, they are now preparing to expand their fueling facility to support more CNG vehicles. Last year they hit a major milestone of displacing a million gasoline gallon equivalents.

CityofSeattleAndrea Pratt – City of Seattle

Best Achievement in Biodiesel: City of Seattle

The City of Seattle’s fleet has made significant strides in reducing petroleum consumption through a diverse platform of technologies and practices, including biodiesel. With their biodiesel program in full swing in 2015, the City was able to displace an impressive 82,000 gallons of diesel using biodiesel, resulting in a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions of 700 tons! Additionally, they bid their own contract for biodiesel, resulting in more favorable pricing. Their contract places a high value on lifecycle and local economic development, requiring the fuel to be 100% used-cooking oil, 50% of which needs to be collected from sources within 50 miles – something other municipalities in the region can use as a template.

FerrellgasJacob Behrens – Ferrellgas

Best Achievement in Propane Autogas: Ferrellgas

Ferrellgas is an autogas provider that has consistently helped us grow our petroleum displacement over the past five years. In 2015, their organization increased autogas use in our region by 20% over the previous year year, leading to an additional 100,000 gallons of autogas use. Additionally, they helped us provide vehicle and infrastructure training on the adoption of propane autogas.

CityofTacoma-xKristi Lynett, Jim Parvey – City of Tacoma

Sustainable Commitment: City of Tacoma

The Clean Cities Sustainable Commitment award recognizes organizations that go above and beyond to reduce petroleum use year after year. The City of Tacoma is one of our Coalition’s founding members, and a stalwart supporter of coalition activities ever since. Embracing innovating strategies and showing a willingness to take risks, the City’s accomplishments over the past few years include:

  • Using a considerable amount of biodiesel – among the highest quantities used by any local government.
  • Launching  a CNG fleet and infrastructure deployment, with the longer term goals of using renewable natural gas from their wastewater treatment plant to fuel City vehicles
  • Adopting on-road electric vehicles and deploying many public EV charging stations ahead of the pack. The City now has the largest fleet of neighborhood electric vehicles among our membership. They are also finalizing a new policy that will provide no-cost charging for City employees to encourage more EV adoption.
  • Becoming one of the first users of hydraulic hybrid vehicles, and currently operating a fleet of six units in refuse collection. This is believed to be the largest deployment of its kind in Washington.

Spirit Award: Greg Hansen, Washington State Department of Transportation

The Clean Cities Spirit award honors individuals who walk the talk, drive the jive, and make our Coalition stronger just by being active in it. Our deserving winner this year, Greg Hansen, is someone who is using every trick in the book to green the Washington State Department of Transportation’s (WSDOT) fleet, such as:

  • Guiding the use of biodiesel among one of the largest and most dispersed on-road fleets in the state.
  • Spearheading the adoption of all electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, and overseeing the deployment of dual fuel propane incident-response trucks.
  • Breaking ground to help implement fuel saving technologies, which helped his fleet become the first state fleet in the country to lease Nissan LEAFs (and allowing WSDOTtion to take advantage of the federal tax credit).
Greg also participates in the State’s Alternative Fuel Technical Advisory group, lending his expertise and knowledge to shape the strategy of state and public fleets.  His can-do attitude truly exemplifies the Clean Cities spirit award.

  • Jacob Behrens, Ferrellgas

  • David Broustis, King County

  • Tonia Buell, WSDOT

  • Darren Engle, Blue Star Gas

  • JJ McCoy, Seattle Electric Vehicle Association.

  • Stephanie Meyn, Port of Seattle-Airport

Honorable Mention:

This year we had SEVEN nominees – all of whom deserve recognition. We’d like to acknowledge all of the candidates who continue to drive Western Washington towards a clean transportation future.