WASHINGTON – With the donation of propane-powered off-road and stationary equipment from the Propane Education & Research Council, Mammoth Cave National Park has taken important steps to reduce energy consumption at the park and to serve as a model for other national parks across the country.
PERC’s donation of propane-powered equipment totals more than $62,000 and includes three John Deere zero-turn mowers, two Generac portable generators, and a CleanFuel USA propane dispenser featuring eConnect, a fuel network management system for electronic dispensers.
Roy Willis, PERC president and CEO said, “PERC is thrilled to continue advancing Mammoth Cave’s and the National Park Service’s efforts to go green and adopt clean, American fuel. Propane-powered mowers and propane autogas vehicles reduce greenhouse gas and carbon emissions, while at the same time significantly lowering operating costs.”
“We’ve been dedicated to integrating sustainable practices into park operations for many years,” said Russell Runge, MCNP acting superintendent. “PERC’s generous donation of propane equipment will continue to help us reach our sustainability goals.”
“Not only do the donations help MCNP become more environmentally friendly and better monitor fuel usage, but they also advance the National Park Service’s Green Parks Plan aimed at reducing dependence on foreign oil, mitigating effects of climate change, and conserving energy,” Willis added.
In addition to PERC’s recent donation of propane-powered infrastructure and equipment, MCNP operates eight propane autogas Bluebird school buses and two propane autogas Roush CleanTech Ford F250 pick-up trucks. From shuttling patrons through the park to heating water and mowing grounds, MCNP provides a green experience for park employees and visitors.
“We hope our efforts to use clean energy also set an example and encourage park visitors and our employees to embrace sustainability themselves,” Runge said.
MCNP’s efforts in sustainability began in the late 1990’s when they partnered with the Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition (KCFC), a Clean Cities Coalition partner. KCFC was instrumental in securing the donation of the first eight propane autogas buses, as well as cultivating MCNP’s relationship with PERC. KCFC has been advocating for alternative fuel usage and supporting the National Park Service since it was established in 1993.
“We’re gratified to have been a part of Mammoth Cave’s transition to clean energy over the years, and proud to have played a role in cultivating the park’s relationship with PERC,” said Melissa Howell, KCFC’s executive director. “The continued implementation of green initiatives and the advancement of the Green Parks Plan is a testament to the hard work and dedication of all of these organizations.”