The non-profit organization Clean Energy Coalition (CEC) is working with a number of fleets in Michigan to conduct studies that will help the organization present a business case, for each fleet, for operating alternative-fuel vehicles. CEC is calling this project Michigan Fuel Forward and intends to make this information available to fleets across the U.S. CEC received $500,000 from U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities initiative for this project.

Participating private-sector fleets include DTE, Edw. C. Levy, McNaughton-McKay, and Metro Delivery. Four more private fleets have yet to confirm their participation as of press time. Participating public-sector fleets include Auburn Hills; Dearborn; Farmington Hills; Flint; Grand Rapids; Holland; Pittsfield Twp; Saline; Warren; Western Michigan University; and Ypsilanti. A total of 20 public- and private-sector fleets have committed to participating in the program, according to CEC.

Each fleet will provide data about their fleet vehicles and fuel use in order to help CEC create a baseline for annual fuel use, associated costs, and greenhouse gas emissions. From there, CEC will study a range of different alt-fuel use scenarios and compare it to that baseline data to present the aforementioned business cases for alt-fuel use. The CEC’s reports will also provide guidance for creating and implementing practices and policies that reduce fuel consumption and support the use of alternative fuels.

The CEC said it’s using assumptions in Argonne National Laboratory’s GREET Model fleet footprint calculator to conduct baseline and scenario analysis for the different fleets.

According to Laura Palombi, CEC’s project manager heading up the fleet studies, fleets with a number of vehicles between 50 and 1,000 typically see the most value in the analysis CEC is conducting. In addition to the fleets CEC is currently working with, CEC plans to complete analysis for other fleets through fee-for-service work at the non-profit.

Client report examples are located on the Fuel Forward page on CEC’s website.