May Question of the Month

Question of the Month: How can I improve my gas mileage while driving this summer?

Answer: Whether you are taking a summer road trip or just running errands around town, there are things you can do to improve your fuel economy and save money on fuel in the summertime.

You may notice an increase in your fuel economy as the weather gets warmer. This is because vehicle engines, transmissions and other components take less time to warm up and summer gasoline blends can have slightly more energy per gallon than winter blends. However, if you use your air conditioning (AC) a lot or drive with the windows down, you might actually see your fuel economy drop.

AC is the main contributor to reduced fuel economy in the summertime. In fact, using the AC can reduce a conventional vehicle’s fuel economy by as much as 25%, or even more if you are driving a plug-in electric vehicle (PEV). Driving with the windows down can also reduce fuel economy due to greater aerodynamic drag (wind resistance) on the vehicle. Though this has a small effect on fuel economy, aerodynamic drag is more apparent when driving at the highway speeds typical for road trips.

The following tips can help you use the AC more efficiently and therefore improve fuel economy in the summer:

  • Read the owner’s manual for detailed information on how your vehicle’s AC system works and how to use it efficiently.
  • Park your vehicle in shady areas or use a sunshade to keep the interior from getting too hot.
  • Do not use the AC more than needed. If you need to use the AC, avoid using the “max” setting for extended periods.
  • If you are driving at high speeds, use the AC instead of rolling down the windows. If the vehicle is too hot, you may lower the car windows to expel hot air for the first few minutes. Once the hot air has left the vehicle, switch to using the AC.
  • Avoid excessive idling. Idling can use a quarter to half a gallon of fuel per hour, and more if the AC is on. Do not idle the vehicle to cool it down before a trip; most AC systems actually cool the vehicle faster while driving.
  • PEV owners, pre-cool your vehicle with the AC while still plugged in. Since PEVs use battery power to provide AC, it can drain the vehicle’s batteries and reduce the vehicle’s overall range. If you need to use the AC to cool down your PEV, try to do so while the vehicle is still charging.

 The following tips should be used year-round to improve fuel economy:

  • Use cruise control while driving on highways to maintain a consistent speed and conserve fuel.
  • Remove any unnecessary weight from the vehicle. Vehicles with heavier loads tend to have reduced fuel economy. An additional 100 pounds in your vehicle can reduce fuel economy by 1%.
  • Avoid transporting cargo on the rooftop of the vehicle. Traveling with cargo on the roof increases wind resistance and can significantly lower your fuel economy. Rear-mounted cargo has a much smaller effect on fuel economy than rooftop cargo.
  • Avoid aggressive driving. Aggressive driving (speeding, quick acceleration and heavy braking) can reduce fuel economy by as much as 33% at highway speeds and 5% at city speeds. This informational video shows real-world effects of aggressive driving on fuel economy:
  • Ensure your tires are properly inflated. Tires that are not inflated to the proper pressure can reduce fuel economy by 0.3% for every one pound per square inch (PSI) drop in pressure in all of the tires. Having your tires inflated to the proper pressure is also safer and can help tires last longer.
  • Pay attention to the speed limit. Not only is this a safe practice, but gas mileage tends to decrease when driving at speeds above 50 miles per hour.

For more information on how to improve your fuel economy, please refer to the following websites:

Questions? Contact:

Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team


Posted in Fuels, Idle Reduction, Sustainability, Vehicles |

Alternative Fuel Technical Workshops

In conjunction with the rebate program, the Coalition is also hosting a set of alternative fuel vehicle workshops throughout the region. At each workshop, a panel of speakers will present on their technology of expertise and answer questions pertaining to the practical concerns of operating and maintaining alternative fuel vehicles. To access one of the $3,000 propane or electric vehicle rebates, attendance of one of the workshops is required.

Workshop times, locations, and speakers are as follows:

  • Wednesday, April 15th, Bozeman Public Library, Bozeman, MT 9:00am-1:00pm. To RSVP, click here.

    • Tad Pearson
      • Fleet Manager, ID National Laboratory – Biodiesel
    • Howard Haines
      • Environmental Engineer, MT Dept. of Environmental Quality – Biodiesel
    • Larry Osgood
      • Consulting Solutions and Rocky Mountain Propane Association – Propane
    • Matt Shirk
      • Research Engineer, Energy Storage and Transportation Systems ID National Laboratory – Electric Vehicles
  • Friday, April 17th, Teton County Public Library, Jackson, WY 10:00am-2:00pm. To RSVP, click here.

    • Larry Osgood
      • Consulting Solutions and Rocky Mountain Propane Association – Propane
    • Tracey Hind
      •  Alternative Fuel Automotive Instructor, Western Wyoming Community College – CNG
    • Tad Pearson
      •  Fleet Manager, ID National Laboratory – Biodiesel
    • Matt Shirk
      • Research Engineer, Energy Storage and Transportation Systems ID National Laboratory – Electric Vehicle
Posted in Uncategorized |

February 2015 Newsletter

Click here for our latest newsletter.

Posted in Uncategorized |

Transition Streets

transition_streetsWant to learn simple, practical changes to your home and habits to live more sustainably? Ready to begin a journey to a lifestyle that uses less energy? Check out Transition Streets!

Continue reading

Posted in Sustainability |

Alternative Fuel Vehicle Rebate Program

The Coalition is pleased to announce two new alternative fuel vehicle rebate programs!

Applications accepted now until Tuesday, March 31st.

Compressed Natural Gas Vehicle Rebate

The Yellowstone-Teton Clean Energy Coalition was awarded a grant from the Teton Conservation District (TCD) to provide educational and financial support to regional organizations and individuals to assist in their purchase of alternative fuel vehicles (AFV). More specifically, the program aims to displace petroleum consumption by replacing conventional vehicles with compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles and to help build a fleet to utilize the CNG fueling station that will be installed in the spring of 2015 at Shervin’s Independent Oil. Accompanying educational platforms include workshops discussing CNG vehicles and are open to interested participants free of charge. The rebate program will provide cost shares for 12 EPA certified original equipment manufacturer CNG vehicles or EPA certified CNG conversions of conventional vehicles. EPA certified CNG conversion information can be found at Each entity is eligible to apply for a rebate to assist in their purchase of or conversion to a CNG vehicle. The financial support will cover 50% of the marginal increase in price of the OEM CNG vehicle over the conventionally fueled model, or 50% of the cost of the EPA certified conversion kit and installation to CNG, up to a maximum of $2,000.00.

CNG Rebate Guidelines

CNG Rebate Application

Alternative Fuels Vehicle Rebate

The Yellowstone-Teton Clean Energy Coalition (YTCEC) was awarded a grant through the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Source Reduction Assistance (SRA) to provide educational and financial support to regional organizations and individuals to employ more efficient driving techniques and assist in the purchase of alternative fuel vehicles in the form of rebates. Educational platforms include workshops and are open to interested participants free of charge. Rebates are available to those who attend at least one workshop. Financial support is on the order of a $3,000.00 cost share towards the purchase of an alternative fuel vehicle to displace petroleum and replace a conventionally fueled vehicle. The program will support propane and electric vehicle technologies.

Alt Fuels Vehicle Rebate Guidelines

Alt Fuels Vehicle Rebate Application

Posted in Uncategorized |

January Question of the Month

Question of the Month: How can I search for, update, and add new alternative fueling station information using the Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) Station Locator?

Answer: The Alternative Fueling Station Locator ( is the most used tool on the AFDC and was recently improved to include new options that may change the way users search for and update station information. You can now filter search results by several fuel-specific fields, such as connector type for electric vehicle charging and fill pressure for natural gas fueling. Read on for more details and information on how to update an existing station or add a new station to the Station Locator.

Searching for Alternative Fueling Stations

Previously, Station Locator users could select “more search options” to look for stations with a certain status/access type (e.g., existing, planned, or private), owner type, payment methods, and electric charger types (e.g., Level 2, DC fast charge). The Station Locator now allows users to search filter by fuel-specific fields corresponding to each alternative fuel. First, select a specific fuel type from the “All Fuels” drop-down menu, and then click on “more search options” to choose from the following filters:

  • Compressed Natural Gas (CNG)

o   Fill type – the type of dispensing capability available at the station (e.g., fast-fill, time-fill)

o   Vehicle accessibility – the maximum vehicle size that can physically access the CNG fueling station (e.g., light-, medium-, heavy-duty vehicles)

o   Fill pressure – the pounds per square inch (PSI) pressure available at the station (e.g., 2400, 3000, 3600)

  • Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE)

o   Charger type – the type of electric chargers available at the station (e.g., Level 1, Level 2, DC Fast, Legacy chargers)

o   Connectors and outlets – the type of outlets (e.g., NEMA 14-50, NEMA 5-15, NEMA 5-20) and connectors  (e.g., J1772, CHAdeMO, J1772 Combo, Tesla) available for charging

o   Networks – the name of the EVSE network

  • Ethanol (E85)

o   Mid-level blend availability – stations that provide mid-level ethanol blends, such as E30

  • Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG)

o   Vehicle accessibility – the maximum vehicle size that can physically access the LNG fueling station (e.g., light-, medium-, heavy-duty vehicles)

  • Propane (LPG)

o   Vehicle-specific service – stations that cater to propane vehicles by offering a vehicle fuel-specific price and accept credit cards

Updating Station Information

Once you have located a station of interest, click on the station pinpoint on the map and select “More details” for even more information about the station. If you would like to report updates to the station, such as additional fuel types available, click on “Report a change” in the top right corner of the station details page. Users will receive an email confirmation after reporting updates, and the submission goes directly to the Clean Cities Technical Response Service (TRS) for review and verification. Anyone reporting an update should expect the TRS to contact you or a station point of contact before the changes will appear on the Station Locator.

Adding New Fueling Stations

If you have searched the Station Locator, including private and planned stations, and would like to report one that is not listed, use the New Station Submission form ( You can navigate to this form by clicking “Submit New Station” in the top right corner of the Station Locator map. Please provide as much detail as possible in the submission form, and use the “Comments” section as needed to include additional information. As with the station update process mentioned above, you will receive an automated email confirmation and the TRS will likely contact you to verify information before adding the station to the Station Locator.

Alternatively, you may submit new or updated station information by emailing the TRS directly at If you have several new stations or updates to submit, this method is preferred, as the TRS can provide you with an Excel spreadsheet template.

For more information on how fueling stations are maintained and updated in the Station Locator, see the AFDC About the Alternative Fueling Station Data page (

Posted in Uncategorized |

“Technological Tour de Force”

Can the high distinction of “Best Overall Car” from Consumer Reports really belong to a vehicle with no emissions? Why, yes, yes it can. The revolutionary Tesla Model S has received global praise and according to Consumer Reports’ test rating, “it outscores every other car.” Continue reading

Posted in Vehicles |

Idling Revealed

Each year, cars, trucks, and heavy-duty vehicles in the US waste an enormous amount of fuel running their engines while their vehicles are stationary. Also known as idling, this act effectively reduces vehicle fuel efficiency to 0 mpg and nationwide, wastes 6 billion gallons of gasoline equivalent annually (Alternative Fuels Data Center). That’s enough gas to fill 9,000 Olympic sized swimming pools, or if you were to use it to fuel a 2014 Honda Civic, you could drive it to the moon and back half a million times. More pragmatically, however, 6 billion gallons of fuel can also be represented monetarily as $21 billion.

But who is to blame for wasting all that fuel? Buses and tractor-trailers certainly contribute, but of those 6 billion gallons of wasted fuel, passenger vehicles, that you and I drive, are responsible for roughly half. Collectively, owners of passenger vehicles are throwing away more than $10 billion each year, not to mention, needlessly emitting harmful NOX, particulate matter, hydrocarbons, and carbon monoxide that lead to air quality concerns and increased incidences of smog, respiratory problems, cardiovascular disease, and even cancer. With regard to human health, the CO2 emissions are more benign, but in terms of global health, they have larger implications through the propagation of climate change.

To combat this wasteful action, improve air quality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and increase energy security and sustainability, the Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program has been working hard to reduce idling. In 2012, Clean Cities saved roughly 30.5 million gallons of gasoline equivalent. At $3.50/gal, that’s about $107 million and enough energy to drive a 2014 Honda Civic across the US more than 417,000 times.

While this seems like, and is in fact, an improvement, it is humbling to note that 30.5 million gallons represents only 0.5% of all the fuel wasted in the previous year. That’s a sad slice of pie.


So, what more can be done? Recent research at DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory, determined that idling for more than 10 seconds consumes more gasoline and emits more exhaust than turning off your engine and restarting it. Also, the DOE Clean Cities program reassures us that turning on and off your vehicle more frequently won’t wear out your starter. Many of these misconceptions are relics of older vehicles with finicky engines and carburetors that had to be warmed and were easily subject to flooding, but today’s high tech vehicles will undoubtedly restart. So, tap into that unused $10 billion and turn your vehicle off as you wait to pick up a friend or run in to grab your coffee.


Posted in Uncategorized |

Question of the Month

Question of the Month: What are the new credit allocations that were established under the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE)’s Alternative Fuel Transportation Program (Program) earlier this year? How can I help spread the word on these new Energy Policy Act (EPAct) compliance pathways?

Answer: DOE issued a final rule on March 21, 2014, that establishes credit levels for additional means by which covered state and alternative fuel provider fleets operating under the Program’s Standard Compliance( option may earn credits. These credits may be used toward compliance with a fleet’s alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) acquisition requirements. DOE promulgated the rule pursuant Congress’ direction, set forth in Section 133 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. 

The new credit allocations address the acquisition of various types of electric drive vehicles and allow covered fleets to earn credits under Standard Compliance for some vehicles that do not meet the EPAct 1992 definition of an AFV. Newly eligible vehicles include the following (with their credit allocations):

  • Certain hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) – one-half credit
  • Plug-in electric vehicles – one-half credit
  • Fuel cell electric vehicles – one-half credit
  • Neighborhood electric vehicles – one-fourth credit

Medium- and heavy-duty HEVs are also eligible for one-half credit after a fleet has met its light-duty AFV acquisition requirements.

Acquiring the electric drive vehicles noted above is not the only new way to earn credits under EPAct Standard Compliance. Fleets may now earn credits for investments of their own funds (not grant funds or other monetary awards) in qualified alternative fuel infrastructure. For every $25,000 invested, a covered fleet may earn one credit, with a limit of five credits available per fleet per model year for private infrastructure investment, and ten credits per fleet per model year for public infrastructure investment.

Other Investments

Fleets may also earn credits for investments in alternative fuel non-road equipment and/or emerging technologies associated with the Section 133-identified vehicles. The credits for non-road equipment are similar to infrastructure – one credit for every $25,000 invested and a maximum of five credits may be earned per fleet per model year. Emerging technologies investments will earn a covered fleet two credits for the initial investment of $50,000 and one credit for every $25,000 invested thereafter, with a limit of five credits per fleet per model year.

Fleets may begin taking advantage of these new credit allocations for their efforts undertaken in model year 2014 and future model years.

How Can You Spread the Word?

Are you aware of any covered utility or state fleets that are building new fueling infrastructure?

  • Inform them they can earn EPAct credits.

Do you have an EPAct covered fleet stakeholder that needs an extra push to buy or lease HEVs?

  • Let them know that certain HEVs are now eligible for EPAct credits.

Do you or your stakeholders have questions regarding EPAct compliance?

Note that covered fleets are currently compiling their Program reports for model year 2014 (September 1, 2013 to August 31, 2014) activities, which are due by December 31, 2014.

For more information, refer to the following resources:

Clean Cities Technical Response Service Team


Posted in Uncategorized |

Alternative Vehicle and Fuel Curriculum Development

Request for Proposals

Wyoming Alternative Fuels in Transportation

Curriculum Development


Yellowstone-Teton Clean Energy Coalition’s (YTCEC) mission is to displace the use of petroleum in the regional transportation sector, improve air quality through reduced harmful exhaust emissions, and increase energy security and sustainability. This is accomplished primarily through the promotion of alternative fuels and vehicles, integrated transportation systems, and conservation strategies and technologies that benefit the public interest by reducing energy consumption, particularly of petroleum-based fuels.  We are located in Jackson, Wyoming, but serving the Greater Yellowstone Area.

Wyoming Alternative Fuels in Transportation Training:

Wyoming Alternative Fuels in Transportation Training is a program of Yellowstone-Teton Clean Energy Coalition.  This program is funded in part through an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Environmental Education Grant.  The program is designed to serve as a model for increasing energy literacy and providing students and community members the information necessary to critically think and evaluate alternative fuels and strategies with the best application in various situations.

The program has two goals: (1) create an alternative transportation fuel and vehicle technologies curriculum for school and community programs and (2) facilitate a statewide workshop series educating teachers (formal and informal), non-profit leaders, and community leaders about air pollution reduction through alternative transportation fuels, vehicle technologies, and strategies (example: idle-reduction campaign) and train these participants to lead programs in their respective schools and communities.

Purpose of the Program: To advance the quality and consistency of teaching about alternative transportation fuels and vehicle technologies in schools and informal community education.  The curriculum will provide teachers (formal and informal), non-profit leaders, and community leaders access to activities and lesson plans adaptable to the environmental context of their respective communities.

Expected Final Product Description: The final product will be a pilot-tested and user-friendly curriculum targeted at students, grades 3-6, 6-8, 9-12 and adult learners.  The curriculum should include an instructor manual, diagrams, games, and a student manual. The instructor and student manuals should include an introduction and chapters covering biodiesel, ethanol, propane, compressed natural gas, electricity, idle-reduction, and technologies and resources.  The instructor manual should include a syllabus and directions for activities and lesson plans. The curriculum materials should address issues relevant to Wyoming and the Rocky Mountain west.

The curriculum must be compliant with the Next Generation Science Standards and list which performance expectations are met.

The curriculum will refer to content and resources provided by the following:

The National Alternative Fuels Training Center – Petroleum Reduction Technologies              

US Department of Energy – Alternative Fuels Data Center

Contractor is required to provide a hard copy and an electronic copy of all documents.

Outcomes: To provide teachers (formal and informal), non-profit leaders, students, and community members the basic knowledge of available alternative fuels and vehicle technologies, provide them with the information necessary to make informed transportation decisions in their every day lives and provide them the tools necessary to be an environmentally literate citizen capable of organizing alternative transportation initiatives in their school or community.

Award Information:

  • Total Project Funding and Number of Awards:
    • One award with funding not to exceed $9,400.00 available upon completion of project deliverables.
      • Travel expenses included in award amount.
      • Timeframe for Completion of Project
        • Start Date: November 18th, 2013
        • End Date: February  24th, 2013

Project Activities: Contractor must be available to meet in person with Yellowstone-Teton Clean Energy Coalition staff upon project initiation and provide bi-weekly meetings until completion date of curriculum, February 24th, 2013.  Minimum one in-person meeting.

Proposal Requirements:  Please provide a resume, sample lesson plan, budget, project timeline for curriculum deliverable completion and contact information for two references. Sample lesson plan should be specific to electric vehicles.

For content and resources, refer to:

Selection Criteria:

  • Award can be made to schools, colleges, universities, not-for-profit organizations, agencies, or individuals.
  • Business entities must be able to provide DUNS number to receive contract award.
  • Demonstration of relevant curriculum development experience
  • Review of references
  • Sample lesson plan
    • Must adhere to Next Generation Science Standards
    • Completeness
    • Age-Appropriate Content
    • Completeness of budget and timeline
    • Preference given to those located regionally, although does not exclude those not regionally located

Proposal deadline: Monday, November 11th.

To inquire about this RFP please contact Yellowstone-Teton Clean Energy Coalition, Program Coordinator Alicia Cox at or (810) 955-5811.

Please submit proposals in PDF and Word format to with the subject line: Proposal: WAFT Curriculum Developer Contract




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