Frankfort, KY, (May 13, 2005) – Melissa Howell, coordinator of the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition (KCFC), has been named Southeast Region Coordinator of the Year by Clean Cities, a U.S. Department of Energy initiative to promote alternative fuels and overall fuel efficiency.
Howell, an enthusiastic and knowledgeable coordinator and a strong proponent of alternative fuels such as ethanol and biodiesel, was singled out during Clean Cities’ 2005 National Partner Awards presentation on May 3.
Under Howell’s leadership of KCFC, Commonwealth Agri-Energy, a 24 million-gallon-per-year ethanol production plant, opened in Hopkinsville in 2004. Mid West Terminal in Paducah installed a 20,000-gallon storage tank for biodiesel. In addition, state government’s diesel fleet began to be fueled with biodiesel.
The Department of Energy awarded the National Energy Leadership Award to Mammoth Cave National Park for being the only national park operating its vehicle and equipment fleet entirely on alternative fuels.
Throughout 2004, KCFC members educated policy makers in state government about alternative fuels. Several KCFC members spent time with senators, representatives and cabinet secretaries as they wrote Kentucky's first formal energy plan, which was released in February 2005.
The Office of Energy Policy (OEP), through a State Energy Program grant, provides funding for a director of KCFC. The coalition aggressively supports clean fuel projects across the Commonwealth.
Both OEP and KCFC support the goals outlined in Governor Ernie Fletcher’s Comprehensive Energy Strategy. The strategy urges creation of policies that promote the production, consumption and availability of biodiesel and ethanol in Kentucky, as well as the use of ethanol or biodiesel blends in state and school bus fleets.