Alternative-fuel transportation will drive Las Vegas show
Amid a climate of skyrocketing oil prices, concerns about traditional fuel supplies and adverse environmental impacts tied to fossil-based fuel, the market for alternative-fuel vehicles is growing by leaps and bounds.
To help both the public and private sectors learn about the latest vehicles, technology and best practices involving clean transportation choices, the 2008 Alternative Fuels & Vehicles National Conference + Expo (AF&V 2008) will soon cruise into Las Vegas.
Slated for May 11-14, the 14th annual event will be held at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino, located in the heart of the sizzling Las Vegas entertainment strip.
An estimated 2,000 key experts and end users, converging from all corners of the globe, are expected to attend the four-day event. Attendees will include policymakers, procurement officials, fleet managers, transportation professionals, university administrators, environmental leaders, fuel providers and a wide range of vehicle manufacturers and suppliers.
Said to be the largest alternative-fuel conference in North America, AF&V is the annual premier event of the Alternative Fuel Vehicle Institute, a Las Vegas-based organization that offers a variety of resources to advance alternative-fuel transportation.
This year’s show will draw on the expertise of more than 200 speakers. Sessions will present a broad overview of the market as well as timely information about pricing and availability of fuels, new technology developments, the impact of government regulations and funding opportunities.
Within the show’s Expo Marketplace, more than 125 manufacturers and suppliers will showcase the latest alternative-fuel vehicles, equipment and technology. In conjunction with the expo, a ride-n-drive event invites attendees to test-drive the latest alternative-fuel vehicles. Company representatives will be on hand to answer questions and discuss the newest technologies that can reduce emissions and operating costs.
AF&V provides a one-stop source of information and products, while offering a neutral meeting place for policy and/or purchasing decision makers involved with fleets and fueling alternatives.
Throughout the AF&V conference, renowned speakers will emphasize cost-efficient ways to integrate clean-burning vehicles into fleets. Topics also will focus on the role vehicles and fuels play in energy security and climate change.
Keynote speakers for the 2008 conference include: Oscar Goodman, mayor of Las Vegas; Robert Hall, fleet environmental manager at the United Parcel Service; Rich Kassel, director of the Clean Vehicles and Fuels Project at the Natural Resources Defense Council; and Bobby Rahal, champion race-car driver and advocate of ethanol fuel.
Concurrent conference sessions are divided into five general categories:
• Electric Drive. Select from presentations such as “All Charged Up: Electric Vehicle Product Rollouts,” “Changing Gears: The Medium- and Heavy-Duty Hybrid Promise” and “Creative Outlets: Growing the Market for Plug-in Hybrids.”
• Fuels and Fueling. Topics will include “Cream of the Crop: Ethanol Leading the Way,” “It’s a Gas: Running Your Fleet on Propane” and “An Ounce of Prevention: How to Select the Right Alternative Fuels for Your Fleet.”
• Money. Delegates can choose from sessions such as “Prophetic Profits: Early Adopters Show How Green Begets Gold,” “Clearing the Air: An Emissions Focused Well-to-Wheels Analysis” and “Fed Fever: Using Federal Incentives to Drive Your Fleet.”
• Policy. Presentations will range from “Hydrogen Cells: Paving the Way for the Hydrogen Highway” to “California Greenin’: The Alternative Fuel Plan That Could Change the World.”
• Vehicles. Delegates can attend sessions such as “Car Talk: Light-Duty Product Rollout” and “Heavy Lifting: Medium- and Heavy-Duty Product Rollouts.”
On Wednesday, May 14, various tours will transport delegates to Las Vegas sites that are major players in the alternative-fuel arena. Attendees can visit facilities such as the city of Las Vegas fleet management center; the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada; and the Las Vegas Valley Water District, which boasts a fleet of vehicles that run on compressed natural gas, hydrogen and biodiesel fuel.
To reinforce the show’s earth-friendly message, the convention itself will implement procedures to minimize adverse environmental impacts. These include:
• When possible, events are within walking distance of the venue.
• Alternative-fuel transportation will be provided to delegates, if available and when necessary.
• To reduce the need for paper, speaker handouts will be available electronically, and nonpaper signage, such as electronic monitors and plasma screens, will convey information.
• Recycled paper will be used for show materials.
• Recycling containers will be placed in highly visible locations for collecting paper and plastic.
• Conference tote bags are reusable, and plastic name-badge holders will be collected for reuse.
The selection of the convention facility also was based on environmental criteria. For instance, the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino incorporates automated set-back thermostats to conserve energy as well as electric power co-generation from waste heat.
For more information about the 2008 AF&V Conference and Expo, visit http://www.afvi.org/.