Indianapolis aims to become the United States’ first major city to replace its entire fleet with electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles.
The city’s mayor says the move is aimed at reducing U.S. reliance on foreign-produced fuels. Indianapolis mayor Greg Ballard signed an executive order on Tuesday mandating the city to replace its current sedans with electric vehicles.
With the help of the private sector, the city also wants to phase in snow plows, fire trucks and other heavy vehicles that run on compressed natural gas. The authorities will also ask automakers to develop a plug-in hybrid police car.
Indianapolis hopes to complete the switch by 2025 in order to help the U.S. reduce its dependence on foreign oil. City spokesman Mark Lotter said the mayor considers it a matter of national security.
“The United States’ current transportation energy model, driven by oil, exacts an enormous cost financially and in terms of strategic leverage. Our oil dependence in some cases places the fruits of our labor into the hands of dictators united against the people of the United States,” Ballard, a retired Marine Officer and Gulf War veteran, was quoted as saying by the Detroit News.
The city fleet includes 500 non-police vehicles, with the police car switch alone having the potential to save taxpayers $10 million a year in fuel costs.