The Drive Clean Rural USA Project is funded by the Department of Energy and led by Transportation Energy Partners, a national non-profit organization that brings Clean Cities coalition leaders together with the clean transportation industry to advance policies that will reduce American dependence on petroleum-based fuels.

Eight Clean Cities Coalitions, including Virginia Clean Cities, are working with TEP to provide on-the-ground assistance to the 24 selected counties, and to companies and institutions in those counties. In addition to Clean Cities Coalitions, this project is also supported by an amazing group of industry partners. 

This is a learning project, we want to understand what is going to help rural communities transition to cleaner fuels and vehicles, and what barriers exist that might need to be addressed by policy incentives, state and federal investments, or education. Through this project, we will be providing rural fleets and counties with four areas of assistance: Fleet Technical Assistance, Demonstration Vehicles, support of Regional Jobs and Business Growth, and Promotion of Fleet Leadership. Our ultimate goal is to see positive action come out of the counties we engage. That might include a commitment to purchase one or more alternative fuel vehicles in the short term, or a plan to transition a fleet, and/or commitments from commercial and institutional fleets in your county.

We are excited to have so many resources to share, but we know from experience that you won’t get the value you need from this project unless the county is committed to providing staff time, data, and information. If you would like your rural county or fleet to be supported by this project, the first step is to reach out to Sarah Stalcup-Jones at VCC to set up a meeting to go over your fleet or county’s needs. 

Through this project, VCC has been able to provide free fleet assessments to the City of Fredericksburg, the University of Mary Washington, Pittsylvania County, and the Virginia State Parks as well as provide alternative fuel education and demonstrations around the Commonwealth.

Project Webinars

Check Transportation Energy Partners’ most recent webinar –

Clean School Buses Success Stories & EPA Clean School Bus Rebate Program

The Drive Clean Rural USA project lead, Transportation Energy Partners, hosted a webinar on June 21st with a great lineup of speakers, including two EPA staff who spoke about how to apply for clean school bus rebates, and three school transportation experts who shared how their districts have benefitted from propane, electric, and natural gas school buses.

Speakers included:

  • Faye Swift, Diesel Emissions Reduction Act Program Grants and Policy Team Leader, EPA
  • Clayton Batko, Outreach and Regional Coordinaiton Lead, Clean School Bus Program, EPA
  • Deborah Coles, Director of Transportation, Safety, and Security, Louisa County Public Schools (VA)
  • Paul Bergera, Director of Transportation, Jordan School District (UT)
  • Joel Stutheit, Director of Transportation, Bethel School District (WA)

Drive Clean Rural VA: USDA Community Facilities Direct Loan and Grant Program

On April 19th, 2021 Virginia Clean Cities was joined by RD Virginia State Director, Perry Hickman, and Community Programs Specialist, Barabara Hodges, of USDA Rural Development to discuss the USDA Community Facilities Direct Loan and Grant Program. This program provides affordable funding to develop essential community facilities in rural areas and can be a great way for rural fleets to transition to alternative fuels!

Drive Clean Rural VA: Clean Fuels Serving Law Enforcement

As part of the Drive Clean Rural USA project, this webinar featured:

  • Tyler Herrmann of Louisiana Clean Fuels speaking on Electric Vehicles
  • Chief Koskinas and Officer Sampson from Westport, CT Police Department operating Electric Vehicles
  • Mike Phillips from Alliance AutoGas speaking on Propane
  • Major Wells from Spotsylvania County,

Drive Clean Rural Virginia: How Can Clean Fuels Serve Your Community?

On September 21st, 2021 Virginia Clean Cities joined alternative fuel experts, fleets, and counties for a webinar highlighting the benefits of alternative fuels for small and rural communities. As part of the Drive Clean Rural USA project, this webinar featured:

  • Mike Phillips from Alliance AutoGas speaking on Propane
  • Jill Hamilton from Sustainable Energy Strategies Inc. speaking on Ethanol and Biodiesel
  • Sherrie Merrow from NGVAmerica speaking on Natural Gas
  • Devin Sclater from Dominion Energy speaking on Electrification