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Alternative Fuel Vehicles

Alternative Fuel Vehicles

City Vehicles

The City of Boulder has a long-standing commitment to reducing equipment and vehicular emissions associated with city operations. Currently, 295 of the 440 total vehicles in the city Fleet (67 percent) are classified as alternative fuel vehicles: 105 diesel/biodiesel, 41 gasoline/electric (hybrids), 145 gasoline/ethanol and four propane vehicles.

In 2012, all-electric, on-road vehicles were first introduced into the city fleet. In 2012, the city Fleet had 260 alternative fuel vehicles (out of 420 total vehicles). In 2010 and 2011, all of the 60 vehicles purchased were AFVs, including the city's first alternative fuel fire vehicle. In 2009, the Fleet Energy Strategy Team Subcommittee established a higher goal of 90 percent from the previous 65 percent alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) purchase protocol.

Types of City Vehicles

Type of Fuel

Number of Vehicles

Diesel/Biodiesel 105
Diesel 19
Electric 3
Gasoline 123
Gasoline/Electric (Hybrids) 41
Gasoline/Ethanol 145
Gasoline/Propane 4
Total Alternative Fuel Vehicles (AFVs) 295 of the 440 total vehicles (67 percent)

Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT)

In 1998, the city established a total vehicle miles traveled (VMT) for city-owned vehicles of 3.2 million miles. This target was originally based on the average annual miles driven in 1995, 1996 and 1997. In 2009, the VMT target was revised and adjusted down to just over 3 million miles. Since 1998, the city fleet has not exceeded either VMT target.

Achieving the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Goal

Since 2006, the city's Fleet has met its goal for the Climate Action Plan (CAP). The Fleet goal of the CAP was to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 7 percent below the 1990 level of 2,910 metric tons annual greenhouse gas (CO2) emissions.

B20 Biodiesel at Fleet Services

The city continues to actively pursue the acquisition of alternative fuel vehicles and the use of alternative fuels in support of City Council's environmental sustainability goals. Following a successful pilot project that evaluated the use of B20 (20 percent biodiesel and 80 percent diesel fuel), the city installed a 6,000 gallon tank at the City Yards.

Biodiesel is currently being used by 138 city vehicles and equipment. The City of Boulder had already reached it's goal of 125 alternative fuel vehicles by the end of 2008.

Biodiesel is a completely natural and renewable fuel that can be used in most diesel-powered vehicles and equipment where conventional petroleum diesel is used. Even though "diesel" is part of its name, there is no petroleum or other fossil fuels in biodiesel. Biodiesel is 100 percent vegetable oil-based.