The Village of Downers Grove has been selected the #2 Greenest Fleet in North America. Each year the Government Green Fleet Award ranks the top 50 fleets for their dedicated use of alternative fuel and hybrid vehicles. The Village's improved ranking from 14th Greenest Fleet a year ago is due to the addition of 10 new Chevy Tahoes converted from traditional fuel to Compressed Natural Gas (CNG).
Of the 176 units within the Village's fleet, including on and off road vehicles and equipment, 83% utilize some form of alternative fuel. These alternatives include Biodiesel (B-20), E-85 (Ethanol), Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), propane, solar power, and hybrid combinations. The Village uses CNG fuel to power a wide range of vehicles including compact sedans, pick-up trucks, cargo vans, police patrol vehicles and five-ton trucks. The Village's five-ton trucks were the first in the midwest to be powered by CNG.
The implementation of green initiatives like the use of cleaner, more efficient alternative fuels achieves the Village's Strategic Plan goal of being a Steward of Financial & Environmental Sustainability. Using alternative fuels reduces the environmental impact of fleet operations and is more cost effective than traditional petroleum based products. For example, the per-gallon cost of gasoline equivalent for CNG is $0.70.
These awards are supported by the Clean Cities Coalition, which is operated by the U.S. Department of Energy. Being selected as an award winning Government Green Fleet is a great accomplishment for the VIllage. Past awards include selection as an Illinois Green Fleet by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) and the Clean Fuels Champion Award from the Chicago Area Clean Cities Coalition and the Illinois Governor's Sustainability Award.