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Kansas City International Airport Vehicle Fleet Operation Recognized by Clean Transportation Industry
June 13, 2023

 Organizers of the Advanced Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo, a major advanced transportation technology and clean fleet event, recently announced the winners of its 2023 ACT Expo Fleet Awards. ACT awarded top honors in the Leading Airport Fleet category to Kansas City International Airport, owned and operated by the Kansas City Aviation Department.

The ACT Expo Fleet Awards recognize fleets and individuals leading the transition to near-zero and zero-emission transportation. The winners have shown true leadership in sustainable transportation, demonstrating a commitment to improving the air quality in their communities and successfully transitioning to cleaner technologies within their fleet operations. A diverse set of organizations from across North America were honored in multiple award categories. 

The Leading Airport Fleet recipient, Kansas City Aviation Department, was an early adopter of compressed natural gas technology in 1997 when it incorporated CNG vehicles into its Kansas City International Airport parking shuttle bus fleet, complete with a fueling station. In 2017, it was the first U.S. airport operator to use all-electric buses when the addition of four BYD buses to its fleet and three more in 2020. Seven more are on order. These efforts have led to a fleet of nearly 30 electric and CNG vehicles supporting long-term airport parking operations. All the airport’s electric vehicles are powered by 100 percent renewable energy, making the Kansas City International Airport this year’s ACT Expo Leading Airport Fleet award winner.

In another U.S., possibly worldwide, airport first, the Aviation Department engaged Momentum Dynamics (now InductEV) to install a wireless inductive vehicle charging system for its electric buses in the $1.5 billion new terminal at Kansas City International Airport. The inductive system provides incremental charging to the existing Economy Parking electric shuttle buses during loading and unloading at bus stops, thus keeping the vehicles in service longer along the seven-mile loop. This is another way the City of Kansas City, Missouri, is leading the Midwest and the nation as a hotbed for deploying electric vehicles, as well as other green initiatives.

“The acceleration of the advanced clean transportation market will only work if we have both buyers and sellers making equal commitments to invest in clean fuels and technologies,” said Erik Neandross, CEO at Gladstein, Neandross & Associates (GNA), the nation’s leading clean transportation consulting firm and host of the ACT Expo. “With billions of dollars of investment happening on the supplier side of the equation, we commend and recognize the fleet end users who have stepped up in a big way to help advance the industry’s collective efforts to make these markets economically and environmentally sustainable.”

“The Kansas City Aviation Department has long been at the forefront in implementing the latest in environmentally friendly programs and vehicles,” said Kansas City Aviation Department Fleet Asset Superintendent Aaron Kaden. “We are honored to be recognized by the clean transportation industry to validate our commitment to improving the environment through our fleet program.”

The Aviation Department will see major cost savings by operating the BYD battery-electric buses because they reduce fuel and maintenance costs by tens of thousands of dollars over the lifetime of the bus. Additionally, the Aviation Department contracted with local environmental nonprofit Metropolitan Energy Center to accept and approve $732,800 grant funds from the U.S. Department of Energy through Metropolitan Energy Center to support the purchase of four of the seven buses on order  from a Federal Stimulus Grants account.

In addition to the Fleet Awards, ACT Expo also features dozens of product debuts and major industry announcements, exemplifying the transportation industry’s accelerating shift to low and zero emissions. For more information about ACT Expo, visit actexpo.com.

The Kansas City Airport System is an Enterprise Fund Department of the City of Kansas City, Mo., and is supported wholly by airport user charges. No general fund tax revenues are used for the administration, promotion, operation, or maintenance of the airports in the system. Visit FlyKC.com for more information. Find us on Twitter and Facebook.