Did you know according to Nielsen Research, approximately 60% of consumers expect corporations to care about the environment, specifically air quality? For the third straight year, transportation is the largest generator of emissions to cause poor air quality. Because of this, many companies have transitioned their trucking fleets to alternative fuel — and you can too.
SOLVE, SAVE AND BE SEEN
Alternative fuel improves air quality through emission reductions. But – have you also considered implications to your fleet or transportation budget? A transition to alternative fuel isn’t only helping others, it can help your business too.
- Customer-Driven: As environmental pressure intensifies, alternative fuel will strengthen your company’s brand image by solving for air quality issues valued deeply by the markets you serve.
- For organizations with insourced logistics, alternative fuel provides emission reductions necessary for the cleaner world your sustainability plan is built around.
- For trucking carriers, the need to stand out among competition is key to contract retention. Alternative fuel allows your fleet the opportunity to differentiate – providing logistics needs as contracted in addition to desired supply chain emission reductions. As more shippers mandate use of alternative fuel – don’t get left behind.
- Sustainability Performance: Transportation is (and has been for the past several years) the largest greenhouse gas emission generating sector, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Transportation-related emissions compromise air quality for more than 134 million Americans throughout the nation. Alternative fuel provides emission reductions necessary to progress toward the cleaner, healthier tomorrow we all deserve.
- Policy / Economics: Governments across geographies are deploying a variety of strategies to lessen pollution from transportation. Diesel vehicles continue to experience higher vehicle registration rates and fuel taxation. On the other hand, trucking fleets using alternative fuel have access to dedicated lanes on congested roadways and an array of grant funding programs to offset new vehicle and infrastructure investments. In the case of renewable natural gas, environmental financial credits are available to further improve your trucking fleet’s bottom line.
It depends. Let’s face it – each application is different. Often, the best recommendation we can provide is after a quick conversation to better understand your current and desired fleet profile.
Trucking fleets have the decision to deploy a variety of alternative fuels or, select one. It’s important to consider the variances between proven and emerging vehicle technologies. We know downtime is critical to financial performance and can help define a plan right for you.
Alternative fueling infrastructure has been developed across the country, with natural gas being one of the most advanced.
Public or private. Fast-fill or Time-fill. The best solution depends on your fleet’s needs. If your routes operate in a return-to-base pattern, onsite fueling may be an option that is convenient and can save you money. If your routes are longer in length, then a bit of pre-planning is necessary to ensure adequate fueling. An option in this case may be to anchor a new station, obtaining a portion of sales at that location.
Infrastructure relative to emerging fuels such as hydrogen and electric are a bit more questionable. Certainly, developments are happening, but timing is essential. We can’t stress enough – start infrastructure conversations with fueling providers like us, sooner, rather than later to ensure as your vehicles arrive, you’ll be equipped to use them.
In some cases, yes. In others, no. This question really boils down to where you’ll be using the vehicles. Many states appropriate budget toward advancement of clean fuel adoption. For you, this likely can come in the form of grants to either purchase new alternative fuel vehicles or build new alternative fueling infrastructure. The grant program landscape is often changing – reach out and we can link you to funding in your area.
Aside from grants, economic incentives in the form of lower taxes and reduced registration fees positively impact the total cost of ownership. In the case of renewable natural gas, you can expect a low, nonvolatile fuel cost, in addition to potential environmental credits that sweeten its financial attractiveness.
Alternative fuel provides emission reductions without sacrificing your operational bottom line, allowing you to solve for problems valued by your customers. On the economic side, alternative fuel can strengthen your financial performance thanks to government programs and fueling savings.
For trucking carriers, alternative fuel can strengthen your bid value for sustainably-driven organizations, increasing likelihood of acquiring and retaining business.
- Emerging Technologies: Electrification is making headlines across media outlets. You’re likely wondering how it fits within your trucking fleet? Technology although progressing, is still very much in development. Battery electric heavy-duty vehicles are still ~3 years out from commercialization. Fuel cell electric vehicles are even further out. Infrastructure isn’t developed, in terms of fueling stations and in the case of battery, required grid upgrades. Emerging technologies like these will make an incredible impact on air quality once developed, but, know they’re likely not going to help your efforts in the near-term.
- Maintenance: Purchasing a vehicle is one step in your transition to alternative fuel, but one step not to overlook is maintenance. Alternative fuel vehicles, regardless of fuel type, require different maintenance intervals than their diesel counterparts. This doesn’t necessarily mean more expensive – just, different timing and requirements. Define your maintenance (and back-up) maintenance plan ahead of time to keep your trucking fleet on the road.