The state of California continues its relentless drive as the green tech leader here in the U.S. Recently the California Energy Commission awarded over $17 million to eight different companies pursuing alternative fuel and zero emission technologies.
– AeroVironment received over $2 million to establish electric vehicle charging units throughout the state. (Separately, the company recently announced a program where EV buyers can purchasing both the vehicle and charging unit as a bundled product at the dealership.) The City of Yucaipa received funding from the commission to establish charging stations throughout the city.
– Blue Line Transfer was awarded slightly over $2.5 million to build a bio-waste recycling units up in San Francisco. The units would convert food and plant waste products into compressed natural gas to power various public utility vehicles like garbage disposal trucks. Paso Robles Waste & Recycle received funding for a similar plant as well for the county of San Luis Obispo. The Sacramento Municipal Utility District received nearly $2 million from the commission for its project in converting similar waste products to methane.
– The California Energy Commission awarded over $3.5 million to CALSTART, Inc., to continue work on electrified and CNG utility trucks. The state hopes such trucks will eventually replace current diesel-powered vehicles.
– Eslinger Biodiesel, Inc., received $6 million – the biggest share of the $17 million – to build a commercial biodiesel plant in Fresno. The plant will convert used vegetable oil from food services and animal fats from slaughterhouses into biodiesel. The plant is eventually expected to produce over 40 million gallons of such fuel per year.
– Finally, the University of California, Irvine, received $765,000 to continuing developing its software program in alternative fuel management and planning.
States Robert B. Weisenmiller, Commissioner of the California Energy Commission: “These awards are helping to support the expansion of alternative fuels and zero-emission vehicles in California. Additionally, the funded projects will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants to protect our environment and improve the health of all Californians.”
The $17 million in funding are part of the Energy Commission’s Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology program. The commission plans to distribute around $90 million total this year in fulfilling the state’s various clean energy, environment, and transportation policies.