UPMC Replacing 20 Diesel Buses with Compressed Natural Gas Vehicles and Providing Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
PITTSBURGH, Jan. 3, 2013
is replacing 20 diesel-fueled shuttle buses with 20 compressed natural gas (CNG) shuttle buses and has installed six new electric vehicle (EV) charging stations at hospital facilities. By using the CNG vehicles, UPMC is eliminating the consumption of the equivalent of nearly 70 barrels of petroleum per vehicle annually.
With a $500,000 Alternative Fuels Incentive Grant
from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, 13 of the natural gas buses are on the road now and the other seven will be ready next fall.
Natural gas is considered a cleaner burning fuel than diesel and gasoline because it emits little to no mercury, sulfur dioxide or particulates, and also is plentiful, low-cost and domestically produced.
Two other Alternative Fuel Incentive Grants to UPMC are being used for the installation of EV charging stations and are being administered by the Pittsburgh Region Clean Cities
initiative, which is covering 40 percent of the total cost of installation. UPMC joins several other local large organizations participating in the initiative, including Bayer, Giant Eagle and Eaton. These EV stations are part of a vehicle charge network that spans all of southwestern Pennsylvania. Current installations are associated with an expanding regional network along the 376 corridor from the Pittsburgh International Airport to the Turnpike.
Hybrid and plug-in electric vehicles can help increase energy security, improve fuel economy, lower fuel costs and reduce emissions. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Alternative Fuels Data Center estimates that there are nearly 5,000 public charging stations in the U.S. A DOE website allows users to locate alternative fueling stations
in their area. According to Pike Research, a market research and consulting team that provides in-depth analysis of global clean technology markets, sales of electric vehicles in the United States are estimated to reach nearly 48,000 in 2012.
“As part of its ongoing sustainability efforts, UPMC laid the groundwork for the addition of these EV charging stations in 2011. The stations afford UPMC visitors and employees the ability to continue their own efforts in preserving the environment and conserving energy by having a convenient place to charge their vehicles for the price of parking only,” said John Innocenti, president of UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside.
Currently, there are two Level II electric vehicle charging stations available at each of the following facilities. At UPMC East, they are located on the first floor in the visitor’s parking garage (Route 48 entrance). The UPMC Presbyterian garage charging stations are located on level D, and at UPMC Montefiore hospital, they are on the first level of patient parking off of the main driveway.
Additional stations will be added in 2013 at the following garage locations:
• UPMC Shadyside (3)
• University Center (1)
• Forbes Tower Garage (1)
• Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC (1)
“We are happy to provide this alternative energy source for our patients, visitors and employees,” said Michael Grace, vice president of operations at UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside. “UPMC supports the expanding infrastructure of alternative-fuel vehicles that contributes to reduced fuel emissions, improved regional air quality and public health.”