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Alternative Fuels -- State Regulations for Wisconsin

This page contains selected data from the Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) at the U. S. Department of Energy. Additional details and the latest updates may be found at the AFDC summary page for Wisconsin.

Fuel Use

State agency vehicles

The Wisconsin Department of Administration's fleet management policy requires all state agencies to collectively reduce gasoline use in state-owned vehicles by at least 50% by 2015 as compared to the total amount used in 2006. In addition, state agencies must reduce petroleum-based diesel fuel use by 25% by 2015. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 16.045, and Executive Order 141, 2006)

State agency vehicles (recommendation)

The Wisconsin Department of Administration (DOA) encourages state employees operating state-owned or leased motor vehicles to use hybrid electric vehicles or vehicles that operate on gasohol (a motor fuel containing at least 10% alcohol) or alternative fuels whenever feasible and cost effective. The DOA must place a list of gasohol and alternative fuel station locations in each state-owned or state-leased motor vehicle for driver reference. The DOA also encourages Wisconsin residents and state employees who use personal motor vehicles on state business to use gasohol and alternative fuels. (Reference Assembly Bill 40, 2011; Wisconsin Statutes 16.045; and Executive Order 141, 2006)


Definition (biodiesel)

Biodiesel is defined as a fuel comprised of monoalkyl esters of long chain fatty acids derived from vegetable oils or animal fats, either in pure form or mixed in any combination with petroleum-based diesel fuel. The definition of biodiesel is expanded for purposes of existing provisions that encourage alternative fuels use in state-owned vehicles. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 16.045(1)(c))

Funding (idle reduction equipment)

The Wisconsin Department of Safety & Professional Services provides grants to common, contract, and private motor carriers headquartered in Wisconsin that transport freight. Eligible applicants may receive grants of up to 50% for the cost of idle reduction equipment and installation on heavy-duty truck tractors produced in Model Year 1999 or later. The grant program was allocated $1 million for each July to June budget cycle. As of December 2011, program funds are no longer available for the current budget cycle (July 1, 2011 - June 30, 2012). Applications will be available July 1, 2012, for further funding opportunities. Other conditions may apply. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 560.125)

Infrastructure Development

The Wisconsin Department of Administration must pursue, in cooperation with the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, the establishment and maintenance of sufficient alternative fueling infrastructure at public retail outlets to meet the public's traveling needs. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 16.956(3)(f))

Labeling Requirement (biodiesel)

Biodiesel fuel retailers are prohibited from advertising or offering for sale fuel labeled as pure biodiesel unless the fuel 1) contains no other type of petroleum product, 2) the fuel is registered as biodiesel fuel with the federal government, and 3) the fuel meets all of the applicable ASTM specifications. Retailers are also prohibited from selling fuel labeled as a biodiesel blend unless the fuel contains at least 2% pure biodiesel fuel, the blend percentage is identified, and the fuel meets the ASTM standards that apply to biodiesel blends. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 168.14(2))

License Requirement (alternative fuels dealer)

Any person acting as an alternative fuels dealer must hold a valid alternative fuels license and certificate from the Wisconsin Department of Administration. Except for alternative fuels that an alternative fuels dealer delivers into a fuel supply tank of any motor vehicle in the state, no person may use alternative fuels in the state unless the person holds a valid alternative fuels license or an authorized supplier has delivered the alternative fuel. For more information, see the State of Wisconsin License, Permit and Registration Services. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 78.47)

Tax (alternative fuels)

A state excise tax is imposed on the use of alternative fuels. Alternative fuels include liquid petroleum gas (LPG or propane) and compressed natural gas (CNG). The current tax rate on propane is $0.226 per gallon, and the tax rate on CNG is $0.247 per gallon. No tax is imposed on alternative fuels the U.S. government or its agencies (when presented with a valid exemption certificate) uses or vehicles used for urban mass transportation of passengers. For more information, see the Wisconsin Department of Revenue Alternate Fuel Tax Web site. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 78.40)

Tax Credit (alternative fueling infrastructure)

A tax credit is available for 25% of the cost to install or retrofit fueling pumps that dispense gasoline fuel blends of at least 85% ethanol or diesel fuel blends of at least 20% biodiesel fuel, or that mix fuel from separate storage tanks and allow the user to select the percentage of renewable fuel. The maximum credit amount is $5,000 per taxable year for each fueling station that has installed or retrofitted a pump. The credit must be claimed within four years of the tax return. The credit expires December 31, 2017. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 71.07 (5j), 71.21(4), 71.26(2)(a), 71.34(1)(g), 71.45(2)(a)10, 77.92(4), 71.28(5j), 71.30(3)(ed), 71.47(5j), and 71.49(1)(ds))

Tax Exemption (alternative fuels)

No county, city, village, town, or other political subdivision is allowed to levy or collect any excise, license, privilege, or occupational tax on motor vehicle fuel or alternative fuels, or on the purchase, sale, handling, or consumption of motor vehicle fuel or alternative fuels. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 78.82)

Weight Limit Exemption (idle reduction)

Any vehicle or combination of vehicles equipped with fully functional idle reduction technology may exceed the state's gross and axle weight limits by up to 400 pounds (lbs) to compensate for the additional weight of the idle reduction technology. To be eligible for the weight exemption, the vehicle operator must be able to prove, by written certification, the weight of the idle reduction technology and, by demonstration or certification, that the idle reduction technology is fully functional at all times. The weight exemption cannot exceed 400 lbs or the certified weight of the unit, whichever is less. (Reference Wisconsin Statutes 348.15(3)(f))