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The Source for Public Transportation News and Analysis April 19, 2013
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Green Power: Earth Day 2013

What is your public transportation agency or business doing to celebrate Earth Day on April 22? It’s so easy being green!

Many APTA members are reporting several green initiatives related to vehicles, fuel, buildings, and business operations. Here are a few examples.

The Fort Worth Transportation Authority will become the first public transit agency in the U.S. to launch a bike-share program on Earth Day as citizens ride 200 bikes to bike stations located throughout the city.

King County Metro’s vanpool fleet of 1,283 vans in Seattle now includes 20 all-electric, zero-emission Nissan Leaf sedans.

The Milwaukee County Transit System is updating its bus fleet to clean diesel, near-zero-emission vehicles. The agency will add 55 new buses this year, bringing the total to 235, more than half the fleet.

CityLink (the Greater Peoria Mass Transit District) in Peoria, IL, operates all its buses with B20 biodiesel, which is partially made of soybean oil. New buses use a catalytic technology that enables the engine to clean the air as the buses travel.

Due to the temperate climate in Pompano Beach, FL, the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority/Tri-Rail can use biodiesel all year.

Solar panels at select Los Angeles Metro facilities reduced energy costs by approximately $1 million and the agency’s carbon footprint by about 16,500 metric tons in 2010.

In Urbana, IL, the Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District uses geothermal heating and cooling systems for an administration and operations building, resulting in a 67 percent reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and a reduction of 97.2 tons of carbon dioxide equivalents annually.

Boston’s Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) completed energy retrofits for about 50 facilities in the past two years for a savings of nearly 7.5 million kilowatt hours of electricity and just under $1 million in annual operating costs for electricity.
The Ann Arbor Transportation Authority, Ann Arbor, MI, is building a new transit center that will serve as transportation hub and welcoming destination in the downtown area. It will be certified LEED Gold status when it is completed this fall.

Business Operations
Commuter Advertising provides environmentally friendly signage on buses and trains by leveraging existing onboard passenger information equipment to broadcast onboard waste-free messages.

By using Masabi’s JustRide mobile ticketing system on its commuter rail, MBTA has transitioned more than 15 percent of its fares away from physical tickets, reducing the environmental impact of wasted paper and plastic, eliminating litter from punched tickets, and eliminating the need to maintain ticket vending machines.
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