Public transportation is a sustainable way to get where you need to go. In addition to saving energy, sharing rides can help reduce the community's carbon footprint.
Information on public transportation options in Framingham and resources to plan your trip or daily commute are available.
In addition to being a great way to stay active and healthy, cycling is one of the most sustainable ways to get around Framingham. The Community and Economic Development Division created the City's first Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan in 2017 that it is now working on implementing.
HYBRID AND ELECTRIC VEHiCLES
Driving a hybrid-electric plug-in vehicle or electric vehicle can help you save on energy costs as well as shrink your carbon footprint compared to conventional vehicles.
As the sources of energy utilized to produce electricity in Massachusetts are cleaner than in many other states, driving an electric or hybrid vehicle in Framingham is a major way to reduce your carbon footprint. To learn more about how electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles can reduce the ‘well-to-wheel’ emission of greenhouse gasses, check out the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s study of Emissions from Hybrid and Plug-In Electric Vehicles.
Electric vehicles are also much more fuel efficient than conventional fuel vehicles. The U.S. DOE provides an official source for Fuel Economy Information that provides miles per gallons (MPG) ratings and miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) ratings by vehicle make and model from 1984 all the way to the modem day. In addition to calculators and other tools, this service allows you to compare the fuel efficiency of vehicles and is a great reference to use when shopping for a new vehicle (a mobile app is also available).
Promoted by the U.S. DOE, the University of California, Davis has created an Electric Vehicle Explorer tool to help you determine and compare the annual energy costs of different vehicles based on your average commute.
Saving on an electric or hybrid vehicle
A variety of programs exist that help make the purchase/lease of an electric or hybrid vehicle more affordable. The Department of Energy Resources’ energy CENTS tool provides information on a variety of programs and offers available to Framingham residents and businesses. Some opportunities to improve the affordability of an electric or plug-in hybrid vehicle include:
Electric / Hybrid Vehicle Opportunities
FEDERAL INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE TAX (IRS) CREDIT
The IRS currently offers a federal tax credit from $2,500 to $7,500 per new all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicle purchased for use.
GROUP PROCUREMENT OF ELECTRIC & HYBRID VEHICLES
Public procurement groups, often found online, can offer discounted pricing for electric and hybrid vehicles as well as information about the types of offers that are available.
Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles (MOR-EV)
The state of Massachusetts also offers vehicle rebate incentives for residents through the Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles (MOR-EV). As of January 1, 2019, only battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) are eligible for rebates of up to $1,500.
OPPORTUNITY FOR NON-RESIDENTIAL EVERSOURCE CUSTOMERS
Alongside rebates and incentives available for electric and hybrid vehicles, Eversource is currently administering the EV Make Ready Program to make electric charging stations more affordable. Through this program, Eversource will support 100% of infrastructure costs for new charging stations throughout the state. Framingham participants may also be eligible to have the costs of electric charging stations covered as well! Please review the application documents below and contact the Sustainability Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
VEHICLE FUEL EFFICIENCY RaTINGS
The fuel efficiency of a vehicle is important for a number of reasons. The benefits of driving a fuel efficient vehicle include:
- Saving Money on Fuel: Fuel efficiency can have a significant impact on how frequently you fill up your tank and the monthly amount you spend on fuel.
- Reducing Your Climate Impact: Fuel efficient vehicles produce less emissions and contribute less to climate change.
- Improving Energy Sustainability and Security: Fuel efficient vehicles (including electrics and hybrids) help reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and allow us to support clean energy development in the United States.
Use the Fuel Economy widget to the right of this section to find the fuel efficiency of your vehicle.
DRIVING EFFICIENCY TIPS
Even without an electric or hybrid vehicle, there are ways to improve your fuel efficiency. The EPA's Fuel Economy website provides some helpful tips to maximize your MPG:
- Avoid Excess Idling: Idling your vehicle can result in unnecessary fuel consumption in addition to engine wear. Try to minimize idling of your vehicle’s engine.
- Use Cruise Control: Using cruise control on your vehicle can help you maintain a constant speed and potentially save fuel while on the highway.
- Avoid Aggressive Driving: Accelerating quickly, stopping short, and other aggressive driving behaviors can reduce your fuel efficiency. The EPA indicates that aggressive driving can reduce your fuel efficiency anywhere from 10% to 40%.
Visit the EPA's Fuel Economy website to learn more about how to maximize the fuel efficiency of your existing vehicle.