Harvard University Police Department: Hybridization of Patrol Fleet

Project Completion: January, 2013

Project Overview

The Harvard University Police Department (HUPD) has gone “green” by using the Harvard Green Revolving Fund to incorporate 6 new Ford Fusion Hybrids to their fleet. Through the transition to hybrid vehicles, the HUPD minimizes its impact on the environment as police officers work by reducing the CO2 impact of idling. Between January and April 2014, the transition to hybrids saved approximately 1,866 gallons of fuel and $5,380 when compared to the Crown Victoria vehicles they replaced. HUPD plans to steer more vehicles within their fleet to more energy and cost efficient options.

Project Goals

  • Reduce GHG emissions through increased fuel efficiency
  • Lower maintenance costs
  • Reduce yearly fuel usage
  • Reduce yearly fuel costs

Metrics (estimated)

  • 2014 Ford Fusion Hybrid (44 MPG city) replaced 2001 Crown Victoria: (14 MPG city)
  • 2014 Ford Fusion Hybrid Greenhouse Gas Emissions (tailpipe): 3.1 Metric tons per year (compared to 2001Crown Victoria, 7.8 metric tons per year)
  • According to the EPA, this is a very favorable number for GHG emissions from a vehicle. On their scale of 1(worst) to 10 (best) 3.1 metric tons per year is a 9.
  • Total Gallons Saved: 1,866
  • Based on a comparison of (4) Ford Fusion Hybrid vehicles to (4) Crown Victoria vehicles at an average gas price of $3.25 per gallon.
  • Total Costs Saved: $5,380
  • Based on a comparison of (4) Ford Fusion Hybrid vehicles to (4) Crown Victoria vehicles at an average gas price of $3.25 per gallon.

Pre-Project Considerations

The success of the New York City Police Department’s (NYPD) fleet transition to hybrid vehicles inspired the HUPD to explore the feasibility of its own hybrid transition. The NYPD has 438 hybrids within their fleet, including 148 Ford Fusions. In support of Harvard’s dedication to a more sustainable future, the HUPD identified this as an opportunity to contribute to lowering the university’s GHG emissions while improving their fleet.

The Project Process

After conducting extensive research on the benefits of hybridizing their vehicles, the HUPD determined it was time to develop a plan and implement the project.  Through their research, the HUPD determined the Ford Fusions to be the best fit for their needs.  Once the plan was developed, the HUPD consulted with the Office for Sustainability to develop an application for funding through the Harvard Green Revolving Fund.

Lessons Learned

HUPD is pleased with the efficiency of the hybrids since they have been integrated into their fleet. When compared to their previous patrol vehicle, the Crown Victoria, the hybrids save money and decrease their environmental impact. While these vehicles are smaller than what the officers are used to, they have been embraced for their high functionality and the community benefits that come from a public commitment to sustainability.

Contact Information:

Jennifer Stacy
​Senior Sustainability Manager
Office for Sustainability
46 Blackstone Street
Cambridge, MA 02139

Email: Jennifer_Stacy@harvard.edu
Office Phone: 617-496-1278