Energy for Transportation

Electric Vehicles and Alternative Fuels

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Electric Vehicles Find a Charging Station Install an EV charger in your home Alternative Fuels in our City Fleet Making our own Biofuels

The City of Raleigh operates a fleet of nearly 1,000 vehicles. The diverse fleet includes everything from police cars to fire trucks and cars to transit buses.  We understand the large environmental impact of driving these vehicles in terms of the greenhouse gases they produce and their effects on the quality of our air. Because of this, we have been working to transition our fleet from traditional fossil fuels toward cleaner burning fuels and non-emitting electric vehicles (EVs).  

Electric Vehicles

The City of Raleigh was an early adopter of electric vehicle technology and continues to support EVs and alternative fuel technologies.  Raleigh was selected in 2009 as one of three cities to participate in Project Get Ready, an initiative designed to help prepare for this new technology. The three cities have served as test labs, addressing and solving challenges that may stall the adoption of electric vehicle transportation.  We have come a long way since then in integrating EV technology into our own vehicle fleets and across the community. 

The City of Raleigh completed a Transportation Electrification Study in late 2019. The Study provides guidance on how the City and community in Raleigh could work toward supporting the increasing number of electric vehicles and the increasing interest in charging locations for electric vehicles. The Study makes recommendations on how the City can move toward more electric vehicles in our own fleet, and provides guidance on how the City and community can help support more electric vehicles and charging options, and how this can be done in a way that is equitable and contributes to our economic development.

Electric vehicles are a cleaner option than driving a standard gasoline-powered vehicle or diesel vehicle, and they produce no tailpipe emissions. Moving toward more electric vehicles will help Raleigh work on its climate action goal of an 80% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions community-wide by the year 2050. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles and transportation in Raleigh is one of our biggest areas of opportunity.

For additional information on these opportunities, please see our Fuel and Fleet Transformation Plan and Transportation Electrification Study

Find a Charging Station

The City of Raleigh provides some publicly accessible electric vehicle (EV) charging stations throughout the community.  You can find out where the locations of the City’s public EV charging stations are and where other public EV charging stations are located around Raleigh here.  

Is one of our charging stations not working? Report it with SeeClickFix. 

Install an EV charger in your home

Electric vehicle charging stations can be installed at your home or business to charge electric vehicles.  The City of Raleigh requires a permit for this installation.  You can find additional information on the permitting process here  or by contacting the City’s Development Services department at (919) 996-2500. 

Alternative Fuels in our City Fleet

 Alternative fuel vehicles help reduce automobile emissions, promote domestic energy production, improve air quality, and help decrease fuel costs. The City of Raleigh has used alternative fuel vehicles in its fleet of automobiles since 2002. Currently, the City has approximately 461 alternative fuel vehicles in its fleet using fuels that include propane, compressed natural gas (CNG), electric, and biofuels (B5, B20, E85). 
The majority of these are flex fuel vehicles, which use both regular unleaded fuels and alternative fuels, such as ethanol (E85 blend). The City also has automobiles that are powered by compressed natural gas (CNG) or electricity. Additionally, the City has been operating at least 75% of its diesel fleet (186 trash collection trucks, recycling trucks and street dump trucks on b20 biodiesel fuel) since January 2002. B20 is a domestically produced renewable fuel derived from vegetable oil that significantly reduces harmful elements of diesel exhaust, such as carbon monoxide. 

Making our own Biofuels

Since 2010, the City of Raleigh Public Utilities Department staff planted many acres of sunflowers every year. This project started near the Neuse River Resource Recovery Facility, and has been such beautiful annual project that it was made more interactive in 2018 with five acres of sunflowers planted in Dorothea Dix Park. These sunflowers work to improve the soils while they are growing and once they are harvested the seeds are converted into biofuel, which is used by City of Raleigh’s farm equipment to reduce the cost of gas and the City's carbon footprint. 

In 2012, the City of Raleigh received a $100,000 grant from the Biofuels Center of North Carolina to purchase seed crushing and processing equipment and begin biofuel production. Through the proceeds of this grant, $65,000 from the City of Raleigh’s Sustainability Fund and additional funding from the Public Utilities Department, Raleigh now has a fully operational mobile biofuel processor housed within a 46’ long trailer. 



Gregory Sponseller


Lead Department:
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Climate Action