Businesses and cities throughout the state continually struggle to keep pace with changing California Air Resources Board rules and regulation, and many turned out Thursday in Irwindale for a “Get up to speed with CARB” workshop, according to the Whittier Daily News.
The event was sponsored by the Irwindale Chamber of Commerce and Westrux International. Speaker Eloy Florez, an air pollution specialist with CARB, provided an overview of some of the rules, regulations and penalties that exist for both public and private vehicle fleets. The real buzz came from municipal fleet managers who have embraced green technology to reduce air pollution and save money in the process.
Paul Condran, equipment maintenance manager for Culver City, said his city pioneered the use of compressed natural gas vehicles. His holistic approach to making Culver City’s fleet an environmentally friendly operation earned it the title of the No. 1 Green Fleet in the nation for 2009.
The Culver City vehicle fleet currently holds the No. 3 slot.
“I look at us as an alternative-fuel property,” he said.
By embracing alternative fuel technology and green practices, Condran said cities can stay a step ahead of CARB requirements, rather than always playing catch-up. He cautioned that a defined and measured approach is needed to get there.
“How many of you in this room know what your annual emissions are and how you can calculate that?” he asked. “Everyone in this room should have that data base available.”
Condran said fleet managers who want to transition to green technology need to map out a clear and concise plan.
That includes a vision, a fact-finding effort to check out the various technologies and costs involved, and developing synergies with fuel suppliers, drivers, management and others. It also means becoming a collaborative thinker.
And there are rewards. Condran said the cost to fill up one of the city’s natural gas vehicles is currently 78 cents per gallon.
By contrast, the average price for a gallon of regular, unleaded gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area on Thursday was $3.69, and diesel was selling for $3.90 per gallon.