The voice of De Anza since 1967.

La Voz News

The voice of De Anza since 1967.

La Voz News

The voice of De Anza since 1967.

La Voz News

Athletics vans switch to ethanol

In an effort to save money and go green, the District has purchased a set of hybrid buses


De Anza athletes will soon be traveling to games in three new vans fueled by ethanol. The vans currently in use are fueled by biodiesel.

The fuel switch is another initiative funded by bond Measure C, approved by voters in 2006. It is a program aimed at replacing aged and fuel inefficient vehicles in the district.

The measure includes approximately $4 million, which is slated to come in three phases of roughly equal amounts over 15 years, according to a public memo from the Foothill-De Anza Board of Trustees meeting on Oct. 4 where the plan was amended.

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“After soliciting prices for these vans, we have developed a better understanding that biodiesel vans have limited availability and cost in excess of $60,000 each,” said executive director of Facilities, Operations and Construction Management of Foothill-De Anza, Charles Allen. “Although ethanol has some disadvantages over biodiesel in terms of fuel cost and availability, the flex fuel vans are readily available and cost approximately $23,000 each, and run on gasoline or ethanol fuel.”

According to the memo, “the difference in price will allow us to purchase six flex fuel vans for approximately the same price as four biodiesel vans. According to Kulwant Singh, Director of Athletics at De Anza, the college has 19 teams that travel to approximately 200 events off campus.

“The district has three mini buses, that’s sometimes not enough for teams’ transportation, so we have to rent vans,” he said.

The mini buses are old and sometimes break down, Singh said. That is what happened a month ago, when the women’s volleyball team was traveling to Stockton and the students didn’t get to the game, he said.

The flex fuel vans will be much cheaper than chartering buses, President of the Foothill-De Anza Board of Trustees Bruce Swenson said. “Typically, one of the coaches drives the van, saving transportation costs,” he said.

The 15-year measure “provides the district a specific opportunity to reduce the adverse impact our carbon-fueled vehicles have on the environment,” Allen said. “The district is committed to stewardship of the environment and to reducing its dependence on non renewable energy sources.”


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