SRPC Attends Granite State Clean Cities Meeting

clean-cities-logo

On December 2nd the Granite State Clean Cities Coalition held their end of the year stakeholder meeting at the NHDES offices in Concord with SRPC staff member, Thomas Brown, in attendance. The Granite State Clean Cities Coalition (GSCCC) is a collaborative administered by the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services that brings together public and private interests from all over New Hampshire. Members in the coalition share the common goals of improving our state’s air quality and reducing our dependence on foreign oil through the development of domestically produced alternative fuels, and various fuel reduction strategies.

The meeting began with a particularly interesting presentation on reducing energy consumption and waste by Tom Blanchette, Director of Operations for New Hampshire Motor Speedway. While stock car racing and energy efficiency may not seem synonymous, Tom outlined the myriad of ways in which both New Hampshire Motor Speedway and NASCAR have been trying to reduce energy consumption and their carbon footprint. Changes within the sport have included adding electric pace cars and using solar panels to power tracks, along with switching to a 15% ethanol fuel blend paired with fuel injected engines. New Hampshire Motor Speedway has made considerable effort in reducing their waste stream by implementing a recycling program. This in turn has allowed them to reduce the size of their trash pickup fleet and utilize more fuel efficient vehicles in the process. Other changes have included the implementation of programs for recycling motor fluids and tires.

Presentations were wrapped up by Paul Lockwood, Transportation Analyst for the New Hampshire DES, who gave an overview of electric vehicle infrastructure deployment in New Hampshire. With major auto companies introducing new alternative fuel vehicles each year and the Federal Executive branch placing a timeline on auto makers to increase fuel efficiency, electric vehicles are a hot topic. Paul discussed the various types of electric vehicles on the market along with the different levels of electric vehicle chargers available, including the DC fast charger, capable of adding up to 80 miles of range to an electric vehicle in 20 minutes. Members of the coalition discussed factors impeding the growth of the electric vehicle market in New Hampshire and how to overcome them. Paul finished his presentation by outlining the ways in which local governments can foster the development of electric vehicle infrastructure. Suggestions include incorporating electric vehicle infrastructure improvements into long range planning, and updating zoning, building, and parking codes to reflect the need for personal and public electric vehicle charging stations.

For more information contact Thomas Brown, Planning Technician, at tbrown@strafford.org

______________________________________________________________________

This post was written using the following resources:

http://www.granitestatecleancities.nh.gov/

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/08/28/obama-administration-finalizes-historic-545-mpg-fuel-efficiency-standard