The North Central Texas Council of Governments, a public|private agency and staunch advocates of green building, sustainable development and transit oriented development here in North Texas, has received a $13.2 million grant from the federal Department of Energy to help with the acquisition of clean-fuel vehicles and related fueling stations.
NCTCOG, which represents the interests of some 233 government agencies in the 16-county area, says the money will go toward 382 “fuel-efficient” vehicles and another 11 refueling stations. The agency says it received all the money it requested from the DOE, which handed out around $300 million nationwide to help cut down on use of oil and gas, along with improving air quality and creating jobs.
All told, the DOE received requests for between $1 billion and $1.2 billion worth of projects, NCTCOG officials say.
“We’re really excited about it,” says Pamela Burns, Dallas-Fort Worth Clean Cities Co-Coordinator at NCTCOG. Agency officials spent “a lot of after-hours and weekends working on this,” she adds.
The DOE money, which became available via the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, will go to a total of 22 local cities, private companies and other organizations, all of which were part of the process for applying for the funds. No more money from this particular grant is available, NCTCOG officials say.
Among other things, the federal funds will help pay for the difference between the cost of a petroleum-fueled vehicle and one run on an alternative fuel, Burns says. “These will be cost-share projects,” she says, meaning that the entities receiving the DOE grant cash have invested their own money as well.