Verizon's Fleet in Washington Metro Area Gets Greener With Introduction of 27 Hybrid Sedans

WASHINGTON - More environmentally friendly Verizon sedans soon will begin making their way around the District of Columbia and Northern Virginia. These 27 hybrid sedans, which will replace traditional vehicles in Verizon's local fleet, will reduce carbon emissions by an estimated 70 metric tons annually.

Verizon is rolling out 100 new hybrid sedans in metropolitan areas across the country.  Locally, 19 sedans are based in Washington and eight in Northern Virginia.  The sedans join 13 hybrid vans already in service in the metropolitan region.   

With engines that run on gasoline and electricity, hybrids are more fuel-efficient than vehicles equipped with traditional engines. The Toyota Prius sedans being added to Verizon's fleet can travel nearly double the miles per gallon and emit less than half the carbon of most traditional sedans.

Verizon's use of hybrid vehicles across the country will annually reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by an estimated 263 metric tons and conserve nearly 30,000 gallons of fuel.  

U.S. Rep. Eleanor Holmes-Norton, D-D.C., said, "As the driver of a hybrid vehicle, I particularly appreciate Verizon's efforts to reduce energy use by including hybrid sedans in the company's fleet operations.  Through its leadership, Verizon is sending the vital message that successful business practices and energy efficiency are compatible and make good business sense.  Best of all, green practices make good sense for the environment in the District of Columbia and, therefore, for the residents of this city and Verizon's customers."

Last year, Verizon began using 13 specially designed service vans with environmentally friendly hybrid-engine systems in Montgomery and Prince George's counties in Maryland, and in Texas.  No domestic motor vehicle manufacturer currently makes hybrid vehicles in the van category, so Verizon worked closely with a company that specializes in hybrid-power systems to retrofit the new vehicles to Verizon's specifications.

William R. Roberts, Verizon regional state president for Maryland and Washington D.C., said, "These additions to our fleet will reduce the amount of CO2 emitted in the Washington Met area and are another example of Verizon's continued commitment to reducing the environmental impact of our operations."

In 2006, Verizon reduced the greenhouse-gas emissions of its operations by more than 334,000 metric tons, about the same as keeping more than 72,000 cars off the roads for a year. Verizon's commitment to green energy practices includes pursuing network equipment and building energy-reduction initiatives; using alternative energy sources in its network, buildings and vehicle fleet; and promoting the company's technology as an alternative to travel, among other efforts.  In 2006 alone, Verizon processed about 70 million consumer bills online, sparing approximately 6,000 trees by reducing the amount of paper used.

Other examples can be found in New Jersey and Texas, where Verizon has tested the use of 20 percent bio-diesel fuel to power service vehicles.  The fuel is a domestic, renewable resource that is biodegradable, nontoxic and is projected to reduce greenhouse gases.  Also in those two states, Verizon has been using environmentally friendly lubricants made from vegetable oils as part of the process to cut sections of fiber-optic cable where the company is installing and maintaining its all-fiber-optic FiOS services. These lubricants are far more biodegradable than the traditional versions.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving 63.7 million customers nationwide.  Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon has a diverse workforce of nearly 238,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $88 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.