Location: Lawrence, KS

Fleet Type: Light, Medium, and Heavy-duty Electric Vehicles

 

Narrative

The City of Lawrence has embarked on the process of electrifying their fleet citywide electrification with the help of Metropolitan Energy Center and our Mid-America Green Fleets Program, which conducts fleet analyses to improve governments’ fleets across the KC metro. Our efforts were assisted by a partnership with Energetics, a clean energy consultancy, and together we were able to provide Lawrence with comprehensive options for fleet electrification.

Recently, the City of Lawrence committed to transitioning the entire municipal fleet sector to renewable energy by 2030. In order to meet this goal, they recruited MEC and Energetics to draft an electrification plan. We found that the City has a current total of 578 vehicles, 235 being light-duty (LD) and 343 being medium-duty (MD) and heavy-duty (HD). Analyzing the current fleet usage and emissions allowed MEC & Energetics to develop lists of replacement vehicles for each category.

Different financial scenarios, as well as different EVs for vehicle replacement, were provided in the plans that MEC & Energetics provided. These recommendations were paired with the City’s 30 locations that they determined as potential EV charging sites. Taking all of this into account, MEC & Energetics concluded our proposal to the City with policy change recommendations, identified funding opportunities, and risk analysis considerations. These detailed insights should provide Lawrence with the expertise needed to meet their electrification goals.

Outputs and Outcomes

This is an ongoing effort, as the information MEC & Energetics collected still needs to be formally presented to the city of Lawrence and relevant partners within the city. However, the necessary deliverables have been completed. In doing so, the Outputs include an assessment of the current Lawrence fleet and devised replacement vehicle options based on findings​. These are complemented by the legal, financial, and other important considerations that MEC brings from years of experience in this field to the city of Lawrence. These Outputs result in the Outcomes of greater readiness of Lawrence to take on fleet electrification and more experience for MEC in working with regional governments.

Best Practices & Lessons Learned

Cities deciding to electrify the entirety of their municipal fleet is certainly an amazing choice for the environment and fighting climate change, but it is a challenging and bold endeavor. MEC & Energetics struggled to come up with a truly affordable plan in terms of finances that the city of Lawrence was hoping for. As such, they have inquired about any other ways to reduce costs, and this search is currently underway. MEC has learned through this process that it is important to be upfront about the long-term investment that EVs are, and that governments and people alike should understand that adapting to climate change sometimes means making sacrifices in the short-run to make strides in the long-run. That said, we are at a crucial turning point when it comes to the availability of environmentally friendly infrastructure, so there are many opportunities to address the challenges that exist at the same time. Our best practice for this success story is the same as the lessons learned: to put electrification efforts into perspective.

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Lawrence Fleet Story

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