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CALSTART Announces 2007 Blue Sky Award Winners

CALSTART has announced the 2007 winners of its Blue Sky Awards, selected for their market leadership and real actions in advanced transportation. The awards recognize outstanding marketplace contributions to clean air, energy efficiency and to the clean transportation industry overall by companies, organizations and individuals.

Award recipients are selected for bringing new vehicles, fuels or technologies to market; for significant implementation of clean, sustainable transportation; or for significant technology or policy breakthroughs that affect the marketplace.

This year’s award winners are:

  • The 2007 Blue Sky Award goes to Navistar International Corporation for its investment in the engineering, development, field assessment and 2007 production launch of medium-duty hybrid trucks earlier and faster than its competitors, making hybrids into a commercial product;

  • The 2007 Blue Sky Leadership Award honors the late Édouard Michelin, CEO and Managing Partner of the Michelin Group, for his global leadership to further advanced transportation technologies, most notably through the annual Challenge Bibendum vehicle efficiency competitions;

  • The Charles R. Imbrecht Blue Sky Innovation Award, is given for innovative leadership actions in policy and technology that impacts and expands the clean transportation market, goes to two separate winners:

    • To James Hankla of the Port of Long Beach and to David Freeman of the Port of Los Angeles for their unprecedented work together and with their organizations to create and implement the San Pedro Bay Ports Clean Air Action Plan; and

    • To California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and to California Assembly Speaker Fabian Nuñez for their passage of landmark legislation AB32: The California Global Warming Solutions Act.

  • Three Blue Sky Merit Awards were awarded for meaningful actions supporting and expanding advanced transportation:

    • To Cummins Westport for introducing and producing natural gas engines in a new market for heavier duty vehicles and for consistently meeting tough emission requirements in advance of regulations;

    • To Global Electric Motorcars (GEM) for both helping launch the battery-powered, neighborhood electric vehicle (NEV) market in 1998 and for continuing to improve, produce and expand vehicle sales in the years since; and

    • To venture capitalist Vinod Khosla for his company’s commitment to significant financial investments in the development of advanced transportation fuels and technology companies, leading the way for other investors in the process.

Energy security and climate change worries have focused greater attention on the importance of advanced transportation. With nearly four dozen quality nominees, it’s becoming increasingly more challenging to pick the most deserving winners.

—CALSTART President and CEO John Boesel

CALSTART selects the award winners in a review process together with a multi-disciplinary selection panel made up of environmental and industry leaders, including representatives from the Natural Resources Defense Council, the American Lung Association of California and the Union of Concerned Scientists.

The Blue Sky Award has been presented since 1996 to industry leaders for outstanding marketplace actions in clean, advanced transportation. Past winners have included General Motors, ISE Corp., New Flyer, Toyota, Pickens Fuel, Ballard and others. The Charles R. Imbrecht Blue Sky Innovation Award, named for the longest serving former chair of the California Energy Commission, celebrates policy and technology innovation that moves markets. The Blue Sky Leadership Award is given periodically for outstanding personal leadership to expand advanced, sustainable transportation markets.

CALSTART is the California operating division of WestStart-CALSTART, a participant-supported organization of more than 145 companies and agencies, dedicated to expanding a high-tech transportation industry that cleans the air, creates jobs and improves energy efficiency to combat global warming and increase energy security.

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