Drive Clean Rural USA targets alternative fuel solutions

May 5, 2022 By    

Bowman Consulting Group Ltd., a multi-disciplinary engineering services firm, partnered with Transportation Energy Partners (TEP) and dozens of public and private partners on Drive Clean Rural USA, a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)-funded pilot project that aims to bring alternative fuel sources, including propane, to rural communities.

Funded by the DOE and managed by the nonprofits TEP and Clean Fuels Ohio, Drive Clean Rural USA is an eight-state pilot project that brings together rural government leaders, business owners, fleet managers, farmers and industry experts to accelerate rural communities’ access to clean fuel transportation solutions. The eight states participating in the pilot project include Alabama, Indiana, Ohio, Oregon, Utah, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.

Participating county government and private fleet partners will receive free technical assistance from Clean Cities coalitions and the project’s industry partners, according to a press release. Drive Clean Rural USA is a three-phase project that will run through June 2024.

Bowman joins the project as an industry partner to provide planning and engineering support to communities in the eight Clean Cities partner states to help them gain access to alternative fuels. Bowman and other industry partners help support rural communities by providing knowledge on infrastructure for alternative fuels, including logistics and transportation, predevelopment construction assistance and construction costs.

According to Bowman, local governments, businesses, hospitals and schools across the country are saving money and enjoying cleaner air by transitioning fleets to U.S. clean fuels and advanced vehicle technologies. But too often, it says, rural communities miss out on the benefits because they don’t have equitable access to information, infrastructure and financing support.

Drive Clean Rural USA is designed to change that. The program will provide vehicle demos, fleet assessments and expert consultation to help rural counties develop practical plans that reflect their distinct fleet priorities, fuel type costs and benefits, infrastructure and financing options, and available federal and state financial incentives.

As part of the program, vehicle fleet analyses will assess factors such as vehicle tasks, drive cycles and mileage. In addition, demo vehicles, ranging from fleet cars, pickup trucks and bucket trucks powered by propane, natural gas, hydrogen, electric plug-in and biofuels, will be available to some program participants.

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About the Author:

Brian Richesson is the editor in chief of LP Gas Magazine. Contact him at or 216-706-3748.

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