The Chicago Area Clean Cities Coalition (CACC) named the Village of Downers Grove as one of its 2019 Leadership Award winners. The awards are given annually to organizations that take actions to reduce petroleum consumption and improve air quality locally. The CACC is one of nearly 100 coalitions across the country affiliated with the U.S. Department of Energy's Clean Cities program."The individuals and organizations we are honoring are terrific examples for others to follow to learn about the advantages of clean-vehicle and alternative-fuel technologies," said Samantha Bingham, coordinator of Chicago Area Clean Cities.
Of the Village's fleet of equipment and vehicles, 61% run on some form of alternative fuel. These alternatives include biodiesel (B20), compressed natural gas (CNG), propane, solar power, and hybrid combinations. In 2019, the Village began using its first plug-in, electric-hybrid vehicles, currently in use by the Police Department's Community Service Officers. These vehicles are averaging over 75-miles-per-gallon, compared to the 14 miles-per-gallon of the Ford Crown Victoria's they replaced. Six more electric-hybrid vehicles are scheduled for purchase in 2020, further reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.
Using alternative fuels reduces the environmental impact of fleet operations and is more cost-effective than traditional petroleum-based products.