Going green isn’t just a trend aimed at households to encourage recycling and ethically sourced products. Countries across the globe are devising ways to reduce emissions from freight transportation vehicles to improve the environmental imprint. The trucking industry contributes heavily to the U.S. economy. But, recent studies are showing that it’s becoming one of the largest contributors to emissions. Recognizing the need for improvement, the U.S. is putting efforts into programs and technologies to help trucking companies and drivers reduce their fuel consumption and emissions.
Trucking and Emissions
There is a global push to reduce overall emissions from the transportation of goods. The use of heavy trucks and semi-trucks is vital to improving the economy, but it can hurt the emissions rate. In fact, the trucking industry in the United States, China, and Europe accounts for a fifth of the oil demand utilizing around 17 million barrels of oil a day. Here are some quick facts about trucking transportation:
- Trucking contributes $1.39 trillion to the U.S. economy.
- It represents one eight of growth domestic products annually.
- 70.6% of freight is moved by trucks
- Trucking revenue consumes over 79% of the nation’s freight bill.
Many countries, America included, are finding ways to reduce the number of emissions through energy improvements. There are various ways this is taking place, and one is through the implementation of programs such as EPA SmartWay® and using auxiliary power units (APU) during long-haul drives.
APUs for the Trucking Industry
APUs are beneficial for tuckers in a couple of different ways. The primary reason for its development was to enable drivers to receive power in the cab without cranking the truck. As a result, truckers can avoid idling their engine. It’s installed as a separate power unit from the actual engine and can host an air conditioning compressor, generator, alternator, and a heating system. In only needs a small amount of diesel fuel to operate as opposed to the main motor.
When you use an APU, you only use one gallon of fuel over a span of eight hours allowing you to save up to 20 gallons a day. Time spent at docks or when you have a refrigerator trailer requires less in fuel for operation, but the extended idling puts less strain on the engine. Over time, trucks will operate more efficiently adding roughly 100,000 miles to the lifespan of a diesel engine. Adding APUs helps drivers control the climate within their cabs overnight, necessary power equipment, and reduces emissions. This device will also protect against unnecessary fines in states where there are restrictions around idling. Some drivers who are at fault for violating these rules can receive fines of up to $100.
EPA SmartWay® for Sustainability
The freight business is rapidly growing. By 2050, it’s expected to surpass emissions from passenger vehicles. Many trucking companies are seeking different ways to streamline operations to limit the number of emissions their fleet contributes. Enter SmartWay®. Launched in 2004, it’s a voluntary public-private program that provides:
- a system to track freight emissions
- companies with strategies to improve sustainability
- fuel-saving technology information to reduce emissions
Trucking companies and freight shippers partner with EPA to measure their environmental imprint and then find ways to reduce it. Through the use of SmartWay® technology, these businesses save fuel, lower costs, and reduce emissions. The program is further advanced through the ongoing support of global organizations who want to make it easier to cut down on demand and use of oil. Since its inception, the program has helped save 215.4 million barrels of oil and avoided emitting 103 million tons of air pollution. Thus, protecting the environment.
Beacon Transport Fuel Efficiency
The EPA program allows many trucking and logistics companies an opportunity to save money and improve the environment. That’s why Beacon is proud to partner with the SmartWay® program as a demonstration of our commitment to decreasing emissions. We believe in utilizing the latest technologies such as electric and diesel-powered ACUs to help our drivers reduce idle time.
For more information about our partnership with SmartWay® or to learn how to become a truck driver, visit our website.