WASHINGTON, D.C. -- As part of the Obama Administration’s commitments to reducing America’s reliance on imported oil and protecting our nation’s air and water, the U.S. Energy Department and the National Park Service announced that five national parks around the country will deploy fuel efficient and alternative fuel vehicles as part of an expanded partnership, helping to protect some of America’s most prized natural environments.
“Through the Clean Cities partnership, the Energy Department and the National Park Service are helping to protect America’s natural resources and put our country on the path to a clean energy future,” said Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy David Danielson. “By advancing access to alternative fuel and fuel efficient vehicles, we are working to reduce our reliance on imported oil, increase our energy security and create jobs across the country.”
Through these efforts, the Energy Department is expanding its partnership with the National Park Service to increase the efficiency and alternative fuel use of vehicle fleets at these national parks, impacting more than 32 million visitors annually while saving $250,000, fuel equivalent to nearly 16,000 gallons of gasoline, and about 83 tons of greenhouse gases each year. In addition to improving the parks’ fleets, the planned projects will showcase alternative fuels, advanced technology vehicles, ways to reduce vehicle idling, and other actions drivers can take to save fuel and money.
“This partnership helps us meet a “Green our Rides” goal – one of nine goals we’ve adopted in a Green Parks Plan to reduce our overall carbon footprint,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. “Changing to alternative fuel vehicles and technologies aligns with our commitment to demonstrate that resource stewardship and sustainability are connected. And there are multiple benefits – we use less petroleum which saves money and reduces air pollution in America’s national parks. Some of these alternative fuel vehicles are multi-passenger rides devoted to park visitors and that means even greater reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. When visitors park their vehicles to enjoy the park by shuttle or bicycle, they can experience even more of the scenery, history and wildlife.”
These new projects build upon the success of three pilot projects launched last year at Grand Teton National Park, Mammoth Cave National Park, and Yellowstone National Park. The parks predict their combined projects will save more than 13,000 equivalent gallons of gasoline and about 100 tons of greenhouse gases annually, as well as reaching 6.5 million visitors each year.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Energy