Alternative Fuel Vehicles (AFVs) & Technology

Federal agencies are required to :

  • Purchase alternative fuel vehicles;
  • Acquire all light-duty vehicles as low greenhouse gas vehicles;
  • Optimize fleet size;
  • Reduce GHG emissions;
  • Increase zero emission vehicles or plug-in hybrid acquisitions; and to
  • Properly account for and report fleet data.

Federal fleets are required to obtain 75 percent of their light-duty annual acquisitions as AFVs in Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs). Vehicles acquired outside of the MSAs also count toward an agency’s percentage, but are not required. Section 301 of EPACT defines alternative fuels as:

  • BioDiesel;
  • Denatured alcohol;
  • Electricity;
  • Hydrogen;
  • Methanol;
  • Mixtures containing up to 85 percent methanol or denatured ethanol;
  • Natural gas; and
  • Propane (liquefied petroleum gas).

In addition, the National Defense Authorization Act of 2008 expanded the definition of an alternative fuel vehicle to include:

  • Any vehicle achieving a significant reduction in petroleum consumption;
  • Advanced lean burn technology vehicles;
  • Fuel cell vehicles; and
  • Hybrid electric vehicles.

GSA Fleet strives to assist federal customers in acquiring vehicles that help to meet federal sustainability requirements and reduce costs. Fleet has achieved measurable success in this endeavor. In FY 2014, the GSA leased Fleet had an overall MPG improvement of 20.5 percent, meaning on average, GSA fleet put a vehicle into the fleet that was 20.5 percent more fuel efficient than the vehicle it replaced.

The AFV requirements are mandated by a number of federal rules including:

  • EISA Section 141 Guidance
  • Energy Policy Act (EPAct) 1992
  • Energy Policy Act (EPAct) 2005  
  • Executive Order 13423 2007 -- Revoked as of March 19, 2015;
  • Executive Order 13514 -- Revoked as of March 19, 2015;
  • May 24, 2011 -- Presidential Memorandum  -- Revoked as of October 01, 2015;
  • National Defense Authorization Act 2008 ; and
  • Executive Order 13693: Planning for Federal Sustainability in the Next Decade (New as of March 19, 2015).

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Last Reviewed 2017-03-16