WASHINGTON, D.C. — Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) was among the organizations and individuals honored here last week by Natural Gas Vehicles for America (NGVAmerica) and the Clean Vehicle Education Foundation for its efforts to advance the development of natural gas vehicles in the U.S.
The 2010 National NGV Achievement Awards were presented at the Natural Gas Vehicle Summit-Conference.
With the help of the South Coast Air Quality Management District, LAUSD has purchased 260 new natural gas-powered school buses, reportedly making it the largest fleet of natural gas-powered school buses in the country.
The district’s decision to integrate alternative-fueled buses into its fleet began in 2003 and was initially driven by an effort to ensure safe transportation for its students. The district adopted the Healthy Breathing Initiative, mandating that the transportation department only accept bids to purchase or contract buses that meet strict emission standards.
“We are excited to support those technologies that help to provide our students and our community with a healthy environment,” LAUSD Superintendent Ramon Cortines has said. “Alternative-fueled buses improve air quality, reduce global warming gas emissions and are investments that safeguard our students from breathing toxic diesel exhaust.”
The district has also developed a strong partnership with the South Coast Air Quality Management District, helping to guide emissions-reduction programs in Southern California while actively pursuing funding to decommission outdated diesel-fueled buses, NGVAmerica said.
The other 2010 National NGV Achievement Award recipients are Verizon; Choice Environmental Services; Oklahoma Speaker of the House Chris Benge; Joseph Noorlag, vice president of operations support for Republic Services Inc.; and Ron Gulmi, manager of product management/transportation for National Grid.