DuPage Forest Preserve District’s fleet ranks among top in the nation

District’s alternative-fuel fleet honored with prestigious awards

A pickup truck from the DuPage Forest Preserve District's green fleet.

The Forest Preserve District of DuPage County’s fleet continues to earn accolades when compared to other fleets across the country.

The fleet was recently recognized as the No. 1 small fleet and No. 2 overall fleet in the blind-judged Leading Fleets Award competition hosted by Government Fleet magazine to highlight the nation’s top-performing fleets regardless of location or budget, according to a news release.

The Forest Preserve District’s fleet also ranked No. 23 in the 100 Best Public Fleets in the Americas competition hosted by the NAFA Fleet Management Association, which recognizes peak-performing public and commercial fleet operations and encourages improvement and innovation within the fleet industry.

This marks the 10th year in a row that the Forest Preserve District’s fleet made the list.

Currently, 95% of the district’s fleet of more than 170 vehicles is powered by alternative fuels — liquefied petroleum gas, compressed natural gas, ethanol, biodiesel, hybrid electric and electric — and the district is committed to achieving a full alternative-fuel fleet.

In-house Forest Preserve District crews maintain standard passenger vehicles as well as specialized equipment such as mowers and tractors. The use of alternative fuels has lowered fuel expenditures, reduced tailpipe emissions and lengthened vehicle lifespans.

The district also helps area municipalities reduce their greenhouse emissions by allowing them to use its alternative fuel station at Blackwell Forest Preserve in West Chicago, which is the first in Illinois with four different alternative fuels.

”These awards serve as a powerful reminder that when passion meets purpose, remarkable achievements are within reach,” Forest Preserve District President Daniel Hebreard said in a news release. “We hope to inspire others to adopt eco-conscious practices as we pave the path toward a cleaner, greener world.”

Michael Webster, the Forest Preserve District’s assistant director of public safety and services, said that the fleet is distinct in not only its variety of vehicles but also its focus on alternative fuels.

“There’s no doubt that our continued emphasis on alternative fuels contributed to these awards,” Webster said in the release. “We firmly believe that the future of transportation lies in embracing cleaner, greener alternatives, and we’ve been humbled by the opportunity to lead the way.”

Shaw Local News Network

Shaw Local News Network

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