Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller pledged that any eligible new vehicles purchased for the city’s light-duty fleet will be electric, hybrids, or powered by alternative fuels. This announcement marks a significant increase from the previous target of a 65 percent clean fleet by the same year. This means less air pollution from city-owned vehicles including pickup trucks and passenger vehicles. The city will also transition heavy-duty vehicles to hybrid and alternative fuels when feasible, such as purchasing hybrid buses and alternative fuel waste trucks.
Steps to electrify the transportation sector are essential in improving air quality. Pollutants emitted from vehicles contribute significantly to ground-level ozone, which makes the air unhealthy to breathe and poses unique threats to people with respiratory conditions. Vehicle emissions also contribute to the global climate crisis, which is already causing higher average temperatures, reducing snowfall, and threatening water availability in New Mexico.
By committing to a 100% clean light-duty fleet, Mayor Keller can help protect Albuquerque’s most vulnerable residents and creates a roadmap for other cities to do the same. This leadership also encourages Albuquerque residents and businesses to consider electric vehicles (EVs) for their own commutes, errands, and other driving needs—if the city can rely on EVs, so can we.
Mayor Keller is a member of the Climate Mayors Electric Vehicle Purchasing Collaborative, a group of climate mayors, who are working to leverage the buying power of their cities to reduce the costs of EVs and charging infrastructure. The Collaborative announced in June of 2019 that 142 cities and counties from 38 states have committed to purchasing more than 2,100 EVs by the end of next year. By the end of 2020, the EV commitments have the potential to cut gas usage by up to 1 million gallons each year, transition to 25 million electric miles driven each year, and add more than $75 million in purchasing power to the EV market.
Mayor Keller’s environmental leadership extends beyond EVs: since taking office in December of 2017, he has announced solar panel installations for a dozen city-owned buildings, required new city buildings to meet higher energy efficiency standards, and pledged to join the Climate Mayors in meeting the Paris Climate Agreement goals. And by joining 25 other cities in the American Cities Climate Challenge, Albuquerque will have the resources and support needed to continue tackling climate change and promoting a sustainable future for its residents.