The National Alternative Fuels Training Consortium (NAFTC) participated in the 2011 Energy Independence Days (EID) Feb. 28 through March 3 in Washington, D.C.

The annual event offered opportunities for Clean Cities coordinators to meet one-on-one with Congressional leaders, brainstorm ideas for future initiatives, discuss projects and share successes. The main activities included a day-long educational seminar and educational meetings and briefings with federal policymakers.

Organized by Transportation Energy Partners (TEP) and held at the American Gas Association/Natural Gas Vehicles for America headquarters, Energy Independence Days featured presentations by industry experts.

NAFTC Executive Director Al Ebron gave a presentation about the NAFTC and briefly discussed the Clean Cities Learning Program (CCLP), which is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Clean Cities Program. CCLP enables Clean Cities coalitions and other stakeholders to better implement petroleum reduction technologies by advancing the use of alternative fuels, alternative fuel vehicles, advanced technology vehicles and idle reduction technologies through state-of-the-art curricula, training and education and outreach materials.

“The NAFTC’s partnership with the Clean Cities Program is an integral part of our success,” Ebron noted. “We value the resources Clean Cities coordinators and stakeholders provide, and it was a pleasure to meet with them at Energy Independence Days.”

NAFTC Executive Director Al Ebron

NAFTC Executive Director Al Ebron makes a presentation at the 2011 Energy Independence Days in Washington, D.C. Credit: NAFTC

NAFTC Assistant Director – Communications and Outreach Judy Moore explained that the NAFTC sponsored a speed networking event, a new EID activity that allowed the event’s sponsors to meet with Clean Cities coordinators.

“We had the opportunity to discuss future plans for National AFV Day Odyssey with the coalition coordinators,” Moore said. “We also brainstormed how to recruit more national training centers to partner with coalitions and how to strengthen the NAFTC’s overall relationship with the Clean Cities coalitions.

“Energy Independence Days was successful for us because it provided the opportunity to network with many coalition coordinators, meet industry representatives and learn about new products,” Moore added. “We also discussed partnering in funding opportunities with several in attendance.”

According to the Energy Independence Days website, TEP has been, since 2002, organizing an event in Washington, D.C., that allows Clean Cities representatives to speak with their legislators. Originally called Washington Days, it was renamed EID in 2007.

Energy Independence Days is a partnership between coalitions and industry supporters of the nearly 90 Clean Cities coalitions across the United States. Sponsor funds from the alternative fuels industry make it possible for dozens of Clean Cities coordinators to travel to Washington, D.C., receive briefings, exchange ideas and meet with Congressional members and staff.

Energy Independence Days Coordinator Barry Carr

Energy Independence Days Coordinator Barry Carr, left, and Transportation Energy Partners Board Chair Sam Spofforth welcome attendees to the 2011 Energy Independence Days. Credit: NAFTC

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