Indianapolis Commits to a Green Fleet

The city of Indianapolis plans to eventually field an entire fleet of EVs — pure electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles — as its mayor, Greg Ballard, has signed an executive order to modernize the city’s fleet. This city of 830,000 residents is Indiana’s capital and largest one and may be best known for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The mayor’s order requires the city to begin the transition to an EV fleet with police vehicles excepted from the order.

National Security

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Indianapolis mayor Greg Ballard.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

At a press conference today, Ballard explained that the decision was one of national security, noting that America’s current energy model is driven by oil. The country’s dependency on foreign sources of oil has made the nation vulnerable to the whims of other countries including some that are hostile to the United States. The mayor is a retired Marine officer and is also a Gulf War Veteran.

Ballard offered details on how the city plans to modernize its entire fleet, stating that the goal is to complete its shift to EV and PHEV vehicles by 2025. The city and surrounding area already boast more than 200 charging stations and is poised to deploy an electrified fleet with its charging infrastructure in place.

Said the mayor, “Over the course of the last century, Indianapolis has been a leader in automotive development, so it is perfectly fitting we lead the way again.

Fleet Savings

Indianapolis will replace approximately 500 vehicles as needed and expects to save taxpayers about $12,000 per vehicle over the 10-year life cycle of each car. The city will also work to convert its heavy fleet vehicles to run on compressed national gas, including its fire trucks, snow plows and its sanitation trucks.

As for its emergency services, specifically its fleet of police cars, Indianapolis expects to someday offer the world’s very first PHEV police car. This last initiative may be its most ambitious one as no automaker currently produces a hybrid energy-powered police car. Still, the city would like to partner with at least one automaker to build a car that could get 40 mpg, in a bid to begin replacing its current fleet that is averaging just 10 mpg.

Transportation Plans

Ballard, a Republican, was elected the city’s mayor in 2007 and was reelected in 2011. You can read more about the city’s plan for a post-oil transportation system on its website.

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