This week, the National Biodiesel Foundation was awarded U.S. Environmental Protection Agency funding for its 2020 National Clean Diesel Project. In partnership with Iowa Department of Transportation (Iowa DOT), Optimus Technologies (Optimus), and Renewable Energy Group (REG), the project supports the purchase of three new replacement snowplows that will operate on B100 and retire older more polluting vehicles.
These new B100-optimized vehicles provide communities of Des Moines and Ames, Iowa. with lower NOx and PM transportation. “We at Foundation are excited to partner with Iowa DOT for the first successful DERA grant to utilize the Optimus B100 technology,” said Tom Verry, Executive Director. “It is projects like this that will showcase the benefits of higher biodiesel blends as the future of clean and sustainable diesel.”
“The Iowa Department of Transportation is pleased to receive this award to help our fleet improve air quality in Iowa and maintains our status as an early adopter of biofuels and related technologies,” said David May, Fleet Manager for Iowa DOT.
These new vehicles will facilitate goods-movement seasonally by providing snow removal service and have access to rail yards, terminals, and key distribution centers. All replacement vehicles will use Optimus Technologies’ Vector technology, allowing the vehicles to operate exclusively on 100% biodiesel—other than startup and shutdown—to optimize fuel savings and emissions performance.
“Optimus’ patented technology is deployed with fleets across the country leading the efforts to reduce emissions and transition to low carbon fuels. Our technology is ideal for demanding applications like snow removal operations and refuse collection that aren’t suitable or practical for electrification,” said Colin Huwyler, CEO of Optimus. “We applaud Iowa Department of Transportation’s leadership in being the first DOT in the nation to deploy B100 within their fleet and are excited to emphasize that the thousands of gallons of diesel fuel being offset will be replaced with biodiesel that is produced right in Iowa.”
REG will provide the B100 refueling infrastructure for the fleet. “As the demand for emissions reduction strategies continue to grow across fleets and municipalities, we are well-positioned to provide quality biodiesel (B100) and other biofuel blend options to our customers,” said Jon Scharingson, Executive Director, Sales & Marketing. “The Iowa Department of Transportation was an early adopter of biodiesel and continues to be an ambassador for cleaner fuels.”
The Foundation will work with IDOT, Iowa Renewable Fuels, Iowa Clean Cities and the National Biodiesel Board to offer technician training to help them better understand the equipment as well as provide community educational events. In addition, partners will conduct outreach efforts to showcase biodiesel and educate fleets and the general public on biodiesel’s air quality and low carbon benefits to the community.