Five-Year Contract to Support 100-Plus ‘Near Zero’ Vehicles
With Gillig to Supply the First 25 Forty-Footers by Year-End,
MRSC Affirms Plan to Support Bus & Refuse Truck Repowers
Clean Energy Fuels has secured a five-year contract to supply its Redeem brand RNG/renewable natural gas – aka biomethane – to the Big Blue Bus transit line in Santa Monica, Calif. The fuel supply pact is worth an estimated $3 million per year, Clean Energy says. updated June 6
Big Blue began using Redeem in January 2015, Clean Energy says.
Coupled with the new super low-NOx 8.9-liter ISL G Near Zero engine from Cummins Westport, Redeem can reduce bus emissions to virtually nil.
Big Blue said at last month’s ACT Expo conference that it plans to acquire 25 new ISL G NZ-powered buses in the coming year, to re-power an additional 30 existing vehicles with the new engine in 2018, and to subsequently buy 50 further new ones (F&F, May 10). The agency operates approximately 200 buses – 125 on compressed natural gas and 75 on liquefied natural gas/LNG (which is being phased out.
Big Blue expects to receive 25 new 40-foot Gillig buses with the NZ engine by year-end. The existing buses to be re-powered include both Gillig and NABI/North American Bus Industries (now part of New Flyer) units.
‘One of the Cleanest Transit Agencies in the Nation’
Clean Energy noted in its announcement this week that the ISL G NZ is the first mid-range engine in North America to receive emission certifications from both the U.S. EPA and California Air Resources Board to 0.02 grams per brake-horsepower of NOx – an optional standard that’s 90% cleaner than existing requirements.
News of the certified engine broke at this past fall’s NGVAmerica meeting in Denver (F&F, October 6).
“By combining the environmental benefits of RNG with the technological advances of this engine, we are proud to say that we are in fact, one of the cleanest transit agencies in the nation,” Big Blue transit director Ed King says in Clean Energy’s announcement.
With the combination of Redeem and the ISL G NZ, “We are about to witness the future of the transportation industry and the incredible advances we’ve made in reducing the impact on the environment,” said Clean Energy senior sales and finance VP Peter Grace.
MSRC Offers $10 Million
In related news, Southern California’s Mobile Source Air Pollution Reduction Review Committee affirmed that its offering $10 million to fund re-powering of existing buses and refuse trucks with the ISL G NZ (F&F, May 13).
As much as $7.5 million in incentives is available for transit buses, MSRC said today – up to $15,000 per qualifying urban transit bus. Up to $2.5 million is being offered for the repower of qualifying refuse collection vehicles – up to $25,000 per vehicle.
“The MSRC wants to be out front helping stakeholders deploy this technology because this near zero emission engine could be such a game changer in reducing mobile source emissions from heavy duty vehicles,” agency chair Greg Pettis said in a release.
“We like to find opportunities to fund innovative clean air projects like this,” he said. “The flexible nature of our funding programs allows us to offer our project partners a chance to be among the first in the country to purchase the cleanest buses and refuse trucks available.”
Pettis is also mayor pro tem of Cathedral City.
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Source: Clean Energy Fuels with Fleets & Fuels follow-up