Blue Sky Award finalists named

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CALSTART, North America’s leading advanced transportation technologies consortium, recently announced the finalists competing for its Blue Sky Award 2008. The annual awards recognize outstanding marketplace contributions to clean air, energy efficiency and the clean transportation industry overall by companies, organizations and individuals. Past winners have included Navistar International, American Honda and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The 2008 finalists were selected as the top firms and individuals from among several dozens nominated internationally for their market leadership and real actions in advanced and green transportation. Winners will be selected from these finalists and announced in early May. A special awards ceremony and luncheon will honor the winners June 10.

“This year’s Blue Sky Award finalists are examples of some of the best in our expanding industry — working to improve air quality, combat global warming, ensure our energy independence and create sustainable, quality jobs,” says John Boesel, CALSTART president and chief executive officer.

The Blue Sky Award 2008 finalists include:

  • AC Transit: for building comprehensive zero-emissions hydrogen fuel cell programs, including a fleet of zero-emissions buses and cars, and on-site fueling and maintenance.
  • Allison Transmission Inc.: for developing and selling hybrid-electric drive systems for both passenger and heavy-duty vehicles that reduce emissions and greenhouse gases.
  • Business Region, Goteborg: for catalyzing Sweden’s use of biomethane as a renewable fuel for transportation, including 4,500 natural gas vehicles, municipal transit buses and a commuter train.
  • City of Culver City Transportation Department: for leadership in municipal fleet operations and application of clean air technologies beyond government mandates.
  • Eaton Corp.: for being first in developing and bringing to market both hybrid-electric and hybrid-hydraulic systems for medium and heavy commercial vehicles.
  • Leif Johansson, CEO, Volvo Group: for his leadership in spurring creative engineering and capital investments for products to address global climate concerns.
  • Mayor Gavin Newsom, the City of San Francisco: for his leadership in green transportation and the conversion of the entire city’s diesel fleet to biodiesel.
  • Motor Coach Industries: for the MCI D4500 CT Hybrid Commuter Coach that saves significant fuel while reducing particulates and noise pollution.
  • Neste Oil: for the development of NExBTL bio-to-liquid technology, creating a renewable diesel replacement to improve both fuel and air quality.
  • Pepsico: for converting its fleet to new hybrids in all operating divisions, with more than 600 hybrids on the road by the end of 2007.
  • PG&E Transportation Services: for implementing the greening of its fleet, including the use of natural gas, biodiesel and other alternative fuels to increase fuel efficiency.
  • Ryder System Inc.: for developing programs and products for its customers to more effectively “green” their transportation functions, and reducing its own carbon footprint.
  • Safeway: for converting its entire nationwide trucking fleet — more than 1,000 vehicles — to a blend of biodiesel and providing biodiesel at its retail fueling stations.
  • Southern Counties Express Inc.: for committing to build and operate an LNG truck fueling station at its own facility that is publicly available to the port trucking community.
  • Sukut Construction: for their voluntary replacement of more than 175 large high-polluting engines with new clean engines, reducing millions of pounds of greenhouse gases.
  • SunLine Transit: for its years-long dedication to alternative-fueled vehicle technology and innovative alternative fuel infrastructure deployment and operation.
  • Union Pacific Railroad Co.: for the development and procurement of ultra-low-emitting “Genset” multi-engine diesel switching locomotives.
  • UTC Power: for the development of its PureMotion 120 fuel cell power system, each of which creates 120kW of power at greater than 46 percent efficiency.
  • ZipCar: for its car-sharing program and its impact on the environment, reduction of parking demands and lessening of traffic congestion and greenhouse emissions.