DoE Site Aims to Help Fleet Managers Make Decisions
The U.S. Department of Energy is talking up a revamp of its Alternative Fuels Data Center website, including a Petroleum Reduction Planning Tool to help fleet managers, municipalities and consumers evaluate alternative fuel and energy efficiency strategies.
The AFDC’s new tool covers biodiesel, electricity, ethanol, natural gas and propane, the agency says, as well as idle reduction and fuel economy.
“From a single web page, a fleet manager can explore multiple strategies,” said Witt Sparks, project manager at DoE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colo.
“Fleets across the country are trying to reduce their vulnerability to spikes in oil prices and are finding themselves increasingly subject to greenhouse gas emissions limitations at the federal, state and local levels,” Sparks said in a release.
AFDC says that the Petroleum Reduction Planning Tool can explore options for fleet improvements by creating “what-if” scenarios based on solid data:
- “What if I replace 10 of my sedans with plug-in hybrid electric vehicles?” or
- “What if I start using B20 biodiesel in my heavy-duty trucks?” or
- “What if I convert my pickup trucks to run on natural gas or propane?”
“Easy-to-read charts and tables display annual reductions in emissions, petroleum use and fuel costs,” NREL says. “Additionally, each section of the tool links to educational resources that provide background information on each efficiency strategy and alternative fuel.”
The reworked AFDC site also includes a library of maps and data, with interactive charts and graphics covering alternative fuel use trends, driving habits, hybrid vehicle availability, biofuels production, transportation regulations, and incentives and vehicle greenhouse gas emissions.
‘Road Maps for Fleets and Drivers, So They Can Learn’
There is also an updated alt fuel station finder, and a collection of case studies in alternative transportation deployment, in both written and video formats.
“These stories serve as road maps for fleets and drivers, so they can learn how others overcame barriers and found success,” AFDC manager Trish Cozart says in the website announcement. “Users can find real-life examples of fleets that run on biodiesel, cities that have developed electric vehicle charging infrastructure, and school districts that power their buses with propane.”
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Source: U.S. DoE release