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The Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) helps federal agencies locate, use, and develop alternative fueling infrastructure, including electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE), to fuel alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) fleets. FEMP offers guidance surrounding infrastructure regulations and installation requirements, and site-specific planning or assistance in partnering with other organizations to achieve federal fleet management goals.

The Energy Policy Act (EPAct) of 2005 requires that all federal AFVs use alternative fuel 100% of the time unless it is not available (i.e., more than five miles or a 15-minute drive away) or is more expensive per gallon than gasoline. In addition, the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) of 2007 requires all federal fleet fueling centers to install at least one renewable fuel pump by 2010.

The U.S. Department of Energy offers data trends on federal use of alternative fuels and vehicles. The data is compiled from reports to the Federal Automotive Statistical Tool (FAST).

Fueling Infrastructure Development Process

The following steps can help federal agencies develop infrastructure to meet alternative fuel use requirements.

Know Your Fleet

Inventory existing AFVs and estimate fuel or battery demand by location. Analyze fleet composition based on mission requirements and frequently traveled routes to identify fleet locations with the highest potential for alternative fuel consumption.

Install On-Site Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment

Get technical guidance from FEMP on EVSE installations that support plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs), including battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). Through partnerships with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s (NREL’s) EVSE Tiger Teams, FEMP can assist agencies with the transition to PEVs.

Tiger Teams include electrical engineers and experts who can help agency fleet managers minimize EVSE installation costs, plan for future vehicle and charging needs, and efficiently meet multiple objectives. The teams conduct site assessments, review assumptions, provide technical input, and offer ongoing support for PEV and EVSE deployment. Contact Brad Gustafson or Cabell Hodge for more information about a Tiger Team EVSE assessment.

Locate and Use Existing Alternative Fueling Stations

Use online tools available from the Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC), including the alternative fueling station locator (also available for mobile devices), to locate alternative fueling stations. Concentrate on fleet locations with the highest number of AFVs first. Identify the nearest alternative fueling stations and determine how many of your vehicles could utilize and/or how much fuel you could purchase from each station per year. Use nearby alternative fueling stations as much as possible.

Locate Nearby Federal Agencies without Alternative Fuel Access

Download information on the location (by ZIP code) of EPAct Section 701 waivered federal AFVs in the Fleet Performance Data section. This information can be used to aggregate demand for alternative fuels among mandated fleets in your vicinity.

Partner with Clean Cities

Clean Cities is part of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Vehicle Technologies Program. All Clean Cities coordinators are pre-screened for interest in partnering with federal fleets to install public alternative fueling stations. Working with a local Clean Cities Coalition allows federal agencies to network and partner with non-federal fleets to aggregate demand for alternative fuels where an agency fleet could not, by itself, attract infrastructure development.

Attract New Public Fueling Stations

Competition is tough for gasoline retailers selling a product judged primarily on price and location. Selling alternative fuel can not only increase customers and differentiate a station, but can also be a profitable investment. When researching public fueling stations, target stations that have already shown an interest in providing alternative fuels. Prior to contacting local retailers, fleet managers should:

  • Determine the amount of alternative fuel needed to support your fleet and partner fleet missions.
  • Identify fuel providers and infrastructure developers that can provide fuel and equipment in your area.

The AFDC provides an E85 Retail Business Case: When and Why to Sell E85, which can help justify the investments necessary for public fueling station operators to install E85 infrastructure.

Participate in Regional Workshops

DOE's State and Alternative Fuel Provider Fleet Program sponsors regional workshops that bring together federal, state, local, and fuel provider fleets with alternative fuel providers and infrastructure developers. The workshops are coordinated by local Clean Cities Coalitions and have a local focus.

Fueling Infrastructure Resources

The following resources can assist in the successful implementation of alternative fuels.

  • AFDC Alternative Fuels and Advanced Vehicles: Information on available and emerging alternative fuels and advanced vehicles.
  • EVSE FAQs: Answers to frequently asked questions about installing EVSE at federal facilities.
  • PEV Charging Cost Calculator: Excel spreadsheet allows users to input vehicle model(s), quantity, and a facility’s electricity cost to calculate the cost of fully charging an electric vehicle.
  • PEV Handbook for Fleet Managers: Document provides detailed guidance about how to successfully deploy and maintain a plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) fleet, as well as general background information about PEVs and charging infrastructure.
  • Ethanol Basics: Fact sheet describes the production and use of ethanol products.
  • Handbook for Handling, Storing, and Dispensing E85: Document provides information on ethanol fuel properties, standards, codes, best practices, and equipment information for those who blend, distribute, store, sell, or use E15, E85, and other ethanol blends.
  • Ethanol Fueling Infrastructure Development: Information for fleet managers interested in installing E85 infrastructure.
  • Biodiesel Basics: Fact sheet describes biodiesel blends and specifications, and the use of biodiesel products.
  • Biodiesel Handling and Use Guide: Guide for handling, blending, distributing, and using biodiesel and biodiesel blends.
  • Natural Gas Basics: Fact sheet describes natural gas as an alternative fuel, including its domestic availability, established distribution network, cost, and emissions benefits.