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USA: City adds electric vehicles

Taking the next step to cut costs and greenhouse gas emissions, the City of Bellevue added three electric cars to its fleet this week.

Purchased with the help of a federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act grant, each $40,000 Chevrolet Volt can go 35 miles on battery power. An onboard gas generator can produce electricity for an additional 340 miles, but it is expected that most staff would use the car in electric mode.

Incorporating electric vehicles into the fleet is part of broader environmental and economic actions that the city has taken through its Environmental Stewardship Initiative. Steadily replacing gas cars with hybrids over the past several years, the city now has 120 hybrids, more than half of the 230 passenger vehicles in the fleet.

According to the city, having a large portfolio of high-efficiency vehicles saves more than $100,000 and 30,000 gallons of gasoline each year, and reduces annual fleet carbon dioxide emissions by 250 metric tons.

“We are not only being good stewards of our environment but also of tax dollars by gradually transitioning to a cleaner, greener fleet,” said Mayor Conrad Lee. “We are walking the talk, and showing our community that it is feasible to use greener cars.”
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