Driving A GEM

Chuck Zimmerman

Ride & DriveOn my way out of the convention center yesterday I stopped by the Ride & Drive and found myself in a Global Electric Motorcars vehicle.

Riding with me is the company’s CEO, Lawrence Oswald. He held the microphone while I drove and interviewed him so you’ll hear some road noise.

Larry tells us about his company and the vehicles they make. He makes a point that the electric vehicle is perfect for in-town driving for short distances where you can be on streets with relatively slow speed limits. With no engine emissions the vehicle is certainly not putting particulates into the air.

You can hear the interview here: Listen To MP3 Larry Oswald Interview (4 min MP3)

I also had to take a short video clip too, not something I recommend to the untrained: Watch wmv file Ride & Drive (WMV file)

Domestic Fuel coverage of the Clean Cities Congress is made possible by the following sponsors:
Alternative Fuel Vehicle Institute Southern California Gas Company

Audio, Clean Cities Congress, Video

Riding & Driving

Chuck Zimmerman

Ride & DriveAt the end of the day today participants here at the Clean Cities Congress could ride and drive a variety of alt fuel vehicles.

After signing your life away for the liability thing you got a wrist band and then it was time to get in line for your turn.

I think there were at least 11 manufacturers out here today. You could choose your fuel. Like ethanol, fuel cell, propane, cng, electric and hydrogen.

Domestic Fuel coverage of the Clean Cities Congress is made possible by the following sponsors:
Alternative Fuel Vehicle Institute Southern California Gas Company

Clean Cities Congress

Meet Our Sponsor

Chuck Zimmerman

Ed HarteOur sponsor for coverage of the Clean Cities Congress is Southern California Gas Company, a Sempra Energy Utility. So I was very happy to meet the guys pictured here. They are Mike Franco, Stan Sinclair, Ed Harte and Michael Bolin.

Ed volunteered for my interview so we can learn more about them and their company. SoCal has invested in the infrastructure to supply natural gas in southern California and it’s their fastest growing product area right now. Besides being a supplier to consumers and businesses they have a training program and see continuted growth in this market.

You can learn a lot more about Sempra Energy in my interview with Ed Harte: Listen To MP3 Ed Harte Interview (8 min MP3)

Domestic Fuel coverage of the Clean Cities Congress is made possible by the following sponsors:
Alternative Fuel Vehicle Institute Southern California Gas Company

Audio, Clean Cities Congress

Vacaville Voyage

Chuck Zimmerman

Ed Huestis & Annabel CookAnnabel Cook, Honda, pictured here with Ed Huestis, City of Vacaville, CA, brought Ed to me and I’m glad she did. Besides the fact that Ed is just a great guy to know he’s got an interesting story.

Ed drove here in a Honda NG vehicle. In the picture they’re standing in front of a new Civic which was unveiled here at the Congress yesterday. I’m pretty sure Ed’s got his eyes on a new one now.

I interviewed Ed so you can hear his story. He describes what he does and how Vacaville not only works to utilize alternative fuel vehicles in their operations but how they offer incentive programs to residents who invest in alt fuel vehicles themselves.

I think you’ll enjoy the interview: Listen To MP3 Ed Huestis Interview (9 min MP3)

Domestic Fuel coverage of the Clean Cities Congress is made possible by the following sponsors:
Alternative Fuel Vehicle Institute Southern California Gas Company

Audio, Clean Cities Congress

Industry Review By Kenzie

Chuck Zimmerman

Jim KenzieGiving us a light-hearted look at alternative fuels as only he can, Jim Kenzie, Chief Auto Reviewer for the Toronto Star spoke at our morning session today.

This isn’t Jim’s first appearance at the Clean Cities Congress. Knowing that I figured he had to be good. That’s how you get invited back. I’m hoping for the same Jim!

Jim is from Canada so he also brings a more international perspective from a country that has become a huge supplier of oil to the United States. I think you’ll enjoy listening to him. I’m posting a portion of his presentation for you here: Listen To MP3 Jim Kenzie Speech (10 min MP3)

Domestic Fuel coverage of the Clean Cities Congress is made possible by the following sponsors:
Alternative Fuel Vehicle Institute Southern California Gas Company

Audio, Clean Cities Congress

Pineapple Ethanol

Cindy Zimmerman

Biomass ResourcesPineapple A Florida-based company is working to make ethanol from pineapples. Biomass Resources Corporation of Boca Raton reportedly has “achieved initial success at extracting Ethanol from pineapple fruit and pineapple plant waste,” according to a news release. Initially, the company is focusing on the pineapple industry for its production, and has established a 5,000 sq. ft. R&D and production facility outside of Cali, Colombia, in South America, in the heart of the pineapple industry. According to the company website, they can derive several valuable by-products from pineapple separation technology besides cellulose for ethanol, including bromelain, xylitol, lignin and protein-laden plant waste.
I just wonder if pineapple ethanol would make a good pina colada.

Cellulosic, Ethanol

Hippies, Rebels and CEOs

Peter West

Peter WestIt is day three of the Clean Cities Conference in Phoenix, and the convention center is packed with conference goers, all here for the same cause. With dozens of sessions, exhibits, ceremonies and receptions, people attending the conference are promised hours of information and entertainment. The crowds of people filling the convention center cannot be filed into one specific stereotype, as business people, hippies, yuppies, truckers and more can be seen in all directions. This just goes to show that the topic of alternative fuels is one which appeals to many different demographics.

Domestic Fuel coverage of the Clean Cities Congress is made possible by the following sponsors:
Alternative Fuel Vehicle Institute Southern California Gas Company

Clean Cities Congress, Peter West

Catalytic Conversion Could Make Ethanol Cheaper

Cindy Zimmerman

Syngas Lowering the cost of ethanol production is the goal of Syngas International, a Canadian alternative energy technology corporation. The company hopes to do that by by replacing corn with less-expensive cellulose-based feed stocks and using its “M2 gasifier and PyStR system,” with is catalytic conversion as opposed to fermentation. According to a news release, “cellulosic feed stocks include agricultural wastes, grasses and woods, and other low value biomass such as municipal waste.”

Ethanol, Research

Coordinator Awards

Chuck Zimmerman

Linda UrataThe annual Clean Cities Coordinator awards were presented by Gunnar Lindstrom, American Honda Company. The first award was the “Leadership Award.” This was presented to Linda Urata, Valley Clean Cities, California.

Kellie WalshNext up on stage was the winner of the “Coordinator’s Choice” Award. This year that is Kellie Walsh, Central Indiana Clean Cities Alliance. Kellie was chosen by her fellow Coordinators from around the country.

Jonathan OverlyAnd the winner of the “Coordinator of the Year Award” is Johathan Overly, East Tennessee Clean Fuels Coalition. All the winners were presented with award trophies. I think Jonathan will also receive free registration at a number of industry events over the next year which will be very helpful to his conference budget.

Congratulations to our winners! As I’ve learned here this week, they are the people who are championing the alternative fuel vehicle cause in cities all over the country.

Domestic Fuel coverage of the Clean Cities Congress is made possible by the following sponsors:
Alternative Fuel Vehicle Institute Southern California Gas Company

Clean Cities Congress

Lifetime Achiever Kimberly Taylor

Chuck Zimmerman

Lifetime Achievement AwardThe person who first contacted me about blogging the Clean Cities Congress was Kimberly Taylor, shown in the picture second from left.

Her vision to use this new media format for coverage is an example of the kind of work that led to her receiving a very special award.

I’m pretty sure it was a big surprise to her as she was presented with a Clean Cities Lifetime Achievement Award. Congratulations Kimberly. It has been a pleasure working with her as well as all the staff here making the Congress happen.

Domestic Fuel coverage of the Clean Cities Congress is made possible by the following sponsors:
Alternative Fuel Vehicle Institute Southern California Gas Company

Clean Cities Congress