Three coordinators who lead the Lake Michigan Consortium — a collaboration between Chicago Area Clean Cities, Merrillville, Ind.-based South Shore Clean Cities, and Milwaukee-based Wisconsin Clean Cities — were the latest team to be named to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities Hall of Fame. The award recognizes outstanding contributions to the Clean Cities mission of reducing petroleum use in U.S. transportation.
National Clean Cities Director Dennis Smith and Co-Director Linda Bluestein inducted Samantha Bingham (Chicago), Carl Lisek (South Shore), and Lorrie Lisek (Wisconsin) into the Clean Cities Hall of Fame on Sept. 3. The coordinators were in Lemont, Ill., where representatives from nearly 100 Clean Cities coalitions from across the country gathered for the annual Clean Cities Coordinator Workshop.
Under the umbrella of the Lake Michigan Consortium, the three coalitions have been able to amplify their impact to reduce petroleum in their respective regions. Some of the Consortium's efforts include creating alternative fuel corridors along I-90 and I-94, as well as creating alt-fuel hot spots in Chicago, Milwaukee, and Gary and South Bend, Indiana.
Through the consortium, the coalitions have also been highly successful at replicating each other’s alternative-fuel vehicle programs, such as developing a Green Fleet Program for Northwest Indiana based on elements from Illinois’ successful Green Fleet Program and Wisconsin’s fleet analysis. Additionally, the consortium helped create four local alternative fuel training centers across all three regions and held a popular "Winter Webinar Series” in an effort to educate stakeholders.
Created in 2007, the consortium is made up of more than 500 member organizations. It serves a geographic population of more than 9.8 million people with eleven counties that hold non-attainment status for the U.S. EPA 2008 Ground Ozone standard. The consortium, which offers more than 40 years of combined experience in the Clean Cities program, works closely to provide support and technical expertise for stakeholders using or considering alternative fuel vehicles. The trio of coalitions also holds numerous outreach events and trainings aimed at educating the public, fleets, and automotive technicians in an effort to reduce petroleum use.
In addition to the coordinator trio, East Tennessee Clean Fuels Coalition's coordinator Jonathan Overly was also inducted into the Hall of Fame.