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Propane Helps Fuel Fleet of Historic Site

Aug. 12, 2016

Photo of several men in national park uniforms gathered around a propane tank and electronic equipment attached to it.

The Clean Cities National Parks Initiative and local coalitions help a national historic site in Texas transition to alternative fuels.

The San Antonio Missions National Historic Park (San Antonio Missions NHP) recently wrapped up an ongoing project to adopt propane for its park fleet vehicles with the completion of a new propane fueling station. The installation was accomplished with help from the Alamo Area Clean Cities coalition and the Clean Cities National Parks Initiative. The Propane Education & Research Council—a Clean Cities industry partner—also supported the park by providing technical assistance throughout the evaluation and installation process. The propane station is currently being used to fuel the park's trucks and mowers.

The park's leadership became interested in making the switch to alternative fuels thanks to educational efforts from the Alamo Area Clean Cities coalition and the park's participation in landscaping events hosted by the Alamo coalition and Lone Star Clean Fuels Alliance in Austin, where propane was featured as a fuel to power mowers. In addition, the National Park Service initiated guidance to all parks to "right-size" their fleets, prompting the San Antonio Missions NHP to comprehensively assess its park fleet, reduce vehicle numbers, and initiate the adoption of alternative fuels, including propane.

The San Antonio Missions NHP preserves several Spanish religious sites built in the 17th century and the history of the indigenous people who lived in the area. Alternative fuel is considered a way to help protect the environment of the park's natural surroundings and historic structures by preventing greenhouse gas emissions produced from the use of traditional fuels like gasoline and diesel.

With help from funding through the Clean Cities National Parks Initiative, the San Antonio Missions NHP fleet now includes alternative fuel additions, including:

  • 5 propane trucks (38% of trucks in overall fleet)
  • 3 propane mowers (100% of finish mowers)
  • 1 propane forklift (100% of fleet)
  • 1 propane refueling dispenser.

Learn how other national parks are implementing alternative fuels and working with Clean Cities on sustainable transportation projects.

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