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Enterprise converting buses to biodiesel

April 1, 2010 - 6:48pm


Rental car customers may be able to breathe a little easier during their next trip to the airport.

Alamo Rent A Car, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, and National Car Rental, all brands operated by the subsidiaries of Enterprise Holdings, are converting their airport shuttle buses to run on biodiesel fuel.

The move is a good one for the environment, and will ultimately reduce the company’s carbon emissions. “We are saving 420,000 gallons of petroleum diesel,”  says Lee Broughton, director of corporate identity and sustainability for Enterprise Holdings.

Hydrocarbon and particulate matter emissions will plummet, making the air cleaner and healthier. “It’s the equivalent of retiring 40 shuttle buses from the fleet,” says Enterprise Holdings spokesperson Lisa Martini.

The Missouri-based company’s subsidiaries are racing towards their goal of switching the Alamo, Enterprise and National shuttle buses to 20 percent biodiesel (B20). Airport shuttles buses in Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles, Miami, Raleigh-Durham, N.C., San Antonio, and San Diego are converting to B20 now and half of the company's fleet will run on B20 by next year. All 600 buses will be powered by at least 5 percent biodiesel fuel (B5) this spring.

The move is good for the planet and is “an investment in our future," Lee says. "We think the clean fuel market is about our next 50 years."

Biodiesel conversion is among many of the eco-friendly efforts by Enterprise Holdings and its operating subsidiaries. Lee says the company's owners, the Taylor family, "sees a very long term perspective" when it comes to renewable energy.

Enterprise Holdings operations boast the world's largest fleet of fuel efficient and FlexFuel vehicles and the company is in the fifth year of the Enterprise Rent-A-Car 50 Million Tree Pledge, a partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation and the U.S. Forest Service to plant 50 million trees over 50 years at a total cost of $50 million.

The company's efforts are paving the way for America's clean energy economy.  "If we can play our part in doing that, it’s the right thing to do," Lee says.