Rio Hondo College, a National Training Center (NTC) member of the National Alternative Fuels Training Consortium, showed its commitment to clean air and energy independence by hosting the California Ethanol Symposium: An Examination of Demand vs. Feasibility and Viability, a daylong event held Jan. 14.


The California Ethanol Symposium: An Examination of Demand vs. Feasibility and Viability included a panel discussion of ethanol fuel experts. Credit: Joanna Schroeder.

One of several similar events to be held across the United States, the California Ethanol Symposium is funded in part by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Transportation Education Project aimed at raising awareness across the nation about the use of ethanol and other alternative fuels for advanced technology vehicles. The California Ethanol Symposium was coordinated by Purpose Focused Learning Corporation, Antelope Valley Clean Cities, North Carolina Solar Center at North Carolina State University and Wake Technical Community College in Raleigh, N.C.


Secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture A.G. Kawamura delivered a keynote speech during the symposium’s luncheon. Credit: Joanna Schroeder

“We are very excited to be a part of the California Ethanol Symposium,” said Steve Tomory, director of Rio Hondo College’s Advanced Transportation Technology and Energy Program. “We are convinced that alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles are the future for our country, and we feel this symposium will help us inform the public of what is available now and what the future may hold so that they can start to make plans for adopting alternative transportation.”

With more than 250 participants, the symposium included educators, students, industry experts, city and county fleet managers, policy makers, farmers, media and the general public.


California Congresswoman Judy Chu from California’s 32nd District spoke to the audience about ethanol’s importance for California and the nation. Credit: Joanna Schroeder

Speakers included Judy Chu, Congresswoman from California’s 32nd District; Rich Cregar, Wake Technical Community College; Peter Ward, California Energy Commission; Joe Irvin, California Ethanol Vehicle Coalition (CEVC); Paul Wikoff, policy advisor for CEVC; Warren Turner, vice president of Sweet Sorghum Ethanol Association and chairman of Farmers Growing Fuel; Mike Lewis, Pearson Fuels; Tom Holm, EcoTrek Foundation; Matt Horton, Propel Fuels; Arnold Klann, Blue Fire Ethanol; Rick Teebay, County of Los Angeles; John Frala, Rio Hondo College; JoAnn Armenta, Purpose Focused Alternative Learning and A.G. Kawamura , secretary of California Department of Food and Agriculture.

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