Federal government to buy electrics and smaller cars image

The US administration will only buy vehicles using alternative energy sources to equip its fleet by the end of 2015, President Barack Obama announced Tuesday.

In tandem with the president’s memorandum, the General Services Administration announced a pilot program to buy more than 100 alternative fuel vehicles to be distributed to federal agencies across the country.
The memorandum instructs agencies to develop and implement a methodology to determine their optimal fleet size and provide recommendations for alternative fuel vehicle acquisition. It also requires they have a plan in place to achieve the President’s target by 2015.

“Diversifying our transportation fleet with hybrids, electric vehicles and other alternative fuel vehicles is a critical element in President Obama’s long-term plan to break our dependence on foreign oil and invest in America’s growing clean energy economy,” Energy Secretary Steven Chu said Tuesday.

Memorandum summary:
• By December 31, 2015, all new light duty vehicles leased or purchased by agencies must be alternative fueled vehicles. Those vehicles must use, and be able to readily source, the alternative fuel for which they were designed.
• Executive fleets are required to achieve maximum fuel efficiency and be sized in shape and performance to that essential to meet agency needs.
• The General Services Administration (GSA) shall develop and distribute to agencies a Vehicle Allocation Methodology (VAM) for determining the optimum fleet inventory, eliminating non-essential vehicles and assisting agencies in selecting vehicle options based on lifecycle cost analysis, including projected fuel costs, warranty, operations, mileage, maintenance, and disposal.
• Targets defined using the GSA VAM will be published on Agency websites. Plans approved by GSA must be achievable by end December 2015.
• Under strict guidelines certain vehicles may be exempted, as used for law enforcement, protective, emergency response, or military tactical operations.