February 12, 2013 > Environmental honors for AC Transit
Environmental honors for AC Transit
Submitted By Clarence Johnson
AC Transit has received the Governor's Environmental and Economic Leadership Award (GEELA), the highest environment honor in the State, for the agency's innovative fuel cell and solar energy projects. Established in 1993, GEELA honors individuals, companies and organizations that make significant contributions to the state by developing environmentally friendly practices, while contributing to the local economy.
Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. honored AC Transit as one of 17 organizations that have adopted clean-air business principles and policies that conserve energy, reduce costs and help to improve the environmental health of their surrounding neighborhoods.
"Projects like these take a lot of courage and intensity to do and we are really glad the Governor chose to recognize us," said AC Transit Board President Greg Harper. "We are very proud of what we are doing to enhance the air quality of our local communities and for being able to contribute to the development of these cutting-edge technologies."
Specifically, AC Transit was honored for building the most comprehensive hydrogen fuel cell demonstration program in the country. Its zero-emission fuel cell cars and buses emit only water vapor from their tailpipes and have saved more than 68,000 gallons of diesel fuel.
In addition, the agency will install 400 kilowatt hours of solid fuel cells that will provide stationary power to its largest operating division, and has already installed 2,500 solar panels on its buildings, delivering a significant portion of the power needed for the agency's daily operations.
"The award recognizes our responsibility to create a sustainable environment while promoting a vibrant economy," said Secretary for Environmental Protection Matt Rodriquez. "AC Transit is showing us the way forward. Their unique approach shows how, given a challenge, California's businesses, non-profit organizations and governments can rise to the occasion."