Sustainable Tulsa, the Southside Rotary Club of Tulsa and the Henry Bellmon Sustainability Awards will formally dedicate Tulsa (Okla.) Public Schools’ new compressed natural gas (CNG) compressor on Thursday.
The compressor, which was made possible with $60,000 in donated funds from the Bellmon Awards, will be used to fuel part of Tulsa's fleet of 148 CNG-powered school buses.
In its fifth year, the Bellmon Awards, a collaboration between Sustainable Tulsa and Southside Rotary Club of Tulsa, has a mission to raise awareness and reward those people, agencies, organizations, tribes or companies that dedicate themselves to a balanced approach toward quality of life, responsible economic growth and environmental stewardship. Each year the groups choose a project as beneficiary of the proceeds from the Bellmon Awards Banquet. Tulsa Public Schools was chosen as the 2011 to 2013 beneficiary for its commitment to CNG school buses.
“We are greatly appreciative of Southside Rotary, Sustainable Tulsa and the Henry Bellmon Awards for this special honor,” said Dr. Keith Ballard, superintendent of Tulsa Public Schools (TPS). “TPS has long had a commitment to CNG, and it’s helped us to be better stewards of the environment and our budget dollars. We want to ensure we leave a healthy environment for our children and grandchildren. This grant will go a long ways toward helping us to realize that vision.”
The CNG compressor, which will go live this week in time for the school year, was manufactured and installed by Tulsa-based Tulsa Gas Technologies. Capable of filling as many as 30 buses at a time, the compressor will also allow TPS to expand its fleet of CNG-powered buses.
The dedication will be attended by Rosalyn Vann-Jackson, TPS assistant director of transportation; Jack Carney, Tulsa Southside Rotary Club; Corey Williams, Sustainable Tulsa; and Ballard, the TPS superintendent.