The next time you see a City of Madison fire truck, garbage truck, dump truck or any other diesel equipment, know that it's running much cleaner today than ever before.
Since April 2018, Madison has introduced biodiesel to power most of the vehicle and equipment fleet in support of the Madison Sustainability Plan's 100% renewable energy goals. Biodiesel is an alternative fuel that's more environmentally friendly than fossil fuel. Biodiesel is processed from soybean plants, agricultural byproducts, and recycled cooking oil, and the fuel is mostly sourced from Midwestern states including Wisconsin. By purchasing biodiesel, Madison is supporting local business, reducing harmful carbon emissions and the City's carbon footprint, and mitigating consumption of foreign oil shipped halfway across the world.
Currently, Madison purchases B11 deliveries for the four largest City fueling stations from the contractor Hartland Fuel Products, using a blend of 11% pure biodiesel with regular diesel. At current usage rates, this will result in about 1 million pounds less carbon dioxide emitted into the air by the City's fleet in just one year.
In the coming years, we expect to see electric trucks running in our community with net zero emissions. Until that day, biodiesel can serve as a bridge towards the City's renewable energy goals for cleaner air and a healthier planet.