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Sector: Fleets

Source: Reuters.com By John Kemp

(Reuters) – U.S. distributors and freight hauliers have held down diesel consumption even as their business recovers from recession by making thousands of small changes to their operations.

Improved driver training, restrictions on idling and careful route planning to reduce deadheads (where vehicles travel empty) are all reducing consumption of expensive diesel while helping companies promote their green credentials.

“In 2011, we achieved almost 69 percent improvement in fleet efficiency over our 2005 baseline,” Wal-Mart boasted in its 2012 Global Responsibility Report. “We delivered 65 million more cases, while driving 28 million fewer miles, by increasing our pallets per trailer and better managing our routes.”

“Our network efficiency improvement equates to avoiding nearly 41,000 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions, the equivalent to taking 7,900 cars off the road,” the company wrote.
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Source: Reuters By Nichola Groom

Truckers considering natural gas as an alternative to high-priced diesel say the cost of vehicles that run on the cheap and cleaner-burning fuel is still too high for them to see a timely payback on their investment.

A push to run more of the nation’s truck fleet on cleaner, domestically produced natural gas is rapidly gaining momentum.

Suppliers like T. Boone Pickens’ Clean Energy Fuels, Royal Dutch Shell and China’s private ENN Group are scrambling to build natural gas fueling stations along U.S. highways, while Cummins-Westport Inc will begin later this year selling a 12-liter natural gas engine able to power the biggest trucks on the road.

Truck companies too, are enthusiastic – up to a point.
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Source: Waste & Recycling News.com;  By Jim Johnson

Baltimore – Making vehicle fuel from landfill gas is not just for the big boys anymore.

Disposal sites no longer have to generate thousands, or even several hundred, cubic feet of landfill gas each minute to make a vehicle fueling system economical to operate, attendees at the recent Landfill Methane Outreach Program Conference and Project Expo in Baltimore learned.

Chris Voell is eastern sales manager with BioCNG/Cornerstone Environmental Group LLC, which develops landfill gas-to-vehicle projects. But he once worked at LMOP, part of the U.S. EPA, years ago.

And, back then, he would tell people that vehicle fueling didn’t make sense for a landfill producing less than 1,000 to 1,500 cubic feet of landfill gas per minute.

“I’m going to show you that this technology can work at a tenth that size or even smaller,” he said at the LMOP conference.

Landfill gas development has been incredibly successful over the years in the United States.
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By ,  Source: About.com Guide

Range is increasingly becoming a non-issue with EVs as this latest story from alternative energy company Silex Power attests. On the tiny island nation of Malta, Silex Power is quietly developing a luxury EV it claims will blow all other EVs out of the water when it comes to miles-per-charge. That includes the Tesla Model S’s incredible 265-mile-per-charge title.

Called the Chreos, Silex is announcing the vehicle will go an unbelievable 621 miles between charges. While you are chewing on that, let me tell you the other astounding claim: it takes only 10 minutes to charge.

This super EV makes use of a proprietary system Silex refers to as hypercharging, and owners will have the chance to plug the Chreos into a high-voltage charging station–you guessed it–developed specifically to accommodate the car’s speedy charge.

Compare the hypercharge to Tesla’s system for the Model S, which the company calls supercharging. The latter takes over an hour to charge, however.

Source: www.articlesnatch.com

In a few decades from now, oil deposits throughout the world would be waning out, a sign which is being manifested in form of rising oil prices. Such escalations in the prices have brought various countries throughout the world to think about various other alternate energy sources. Countries like Spain, Japan, Germany, United States, etc have been actively researching and developing ways to harness renewable energy from sources such as wind, sun, water, geothermal, biomass fuel, etc. These efforts have produced results in various countries and they are gradually trying to lower their oil exports.

Governments throughout the world are targeting the alternative fuel sources for running their machines and creating electricity. By understanding how does solar power work, they are able to harness the solar energy to electrify cities. Biomass fuel is being used for running bio fuel cars. Besides lowering the consumption of oil, these alternative fuels for cars have lowered the carbon dioxide emission. In a few countries, buses are being run on fish oil. Waste cooking oil from restaurants is used to run the machines in parks and gaming stations. Even, there have been trial runs of aircraft using bio fuels. Some companies are coming up with engines for cars, which can run on alternative fuels for cars. Undoubtedly, renewable energy resources are being harnessed for various uses and such trysts have been successful. Encouraging signs are in plenty that alternate energy sources can be utilized, but still a few aspects need review and reconsideration.
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Source: Lori Weaver, About.com Guide

It’s probably hard for detractors of electric vehicles to believe, but reports are that California is beginning to experience a shortage of EV charging stations in public parking garages like those found at malls. With only a few charging stations available and many more electric and plug-in hybrid cars parked in these garages, the need for additional infrastructure is becoming evident, at least on the West Coast.

But it isn’t as though we already aren’t seeing a lot of infrastructure growth. In the last year, the number of charging stations took a 130% jump over the number of public stations available the previous year. In fact, over the past five years, there has been an average increase of about 90% each year, according to PA Consulting Group.

Regulatory incentives by both the federal government as well as local entities for installing public charging stations have helped give a boost to on-the-go powering up potential. No doubt the drop in average cost of a station–from around $10,000 to only about $2,000 (excluding installation, which varies)–has had a dramatic influence as well.

Source: Waste & Recycling News.com

Trash haulers continue on what one observer calls a remarkable journey toward the increased adoption of natural-gas-powered collection vehicles.

Joanna D. Underwood, as president of Energy Visionin New York City, has kept an eye on the transportation sector’s use of alternative fuels for years. Her non-profit group promotes a shift away from petroleum-based fuel and has a particularly keen interest in the garbage business.

“We have a real shift taking place now that it has become clear that this fuel is the cleanest commercially available for these large fleets, period, that it’s reducing greenhouse gases, that the technology of using natural gas is sophisticated,” Underwood said.

“The trucks are high-performance trucks, the drivers are less exposed to diesel fuels. It’s a remarkable shift that’s taking place after a century of relying only on petroleum-based fuels,” she said.
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WASHINGTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing the 2013 percentage standards for four fuel categories that are part of the agency’s Renewable Fuel Standard program (RFS2).

The proposal announced today will be open for a 45-day public comment period and EPA will consider feedback from a range of stakeholders before the proposal is finalized. EPA continues to support the use of renewable fuels within the transportation sector through the RFS2 program, which encourages innovation, strengthens American energy security, and decreases greenhouse gas pollution.

The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) established the RFS2 program and the annual renewable fuel volume targets, which steadily increase to an overall level of 36 billion gallons in 2022. To achieve these volumes, EPA calculates a percentage-based standard for the following year. Based on the standard, each refiner and importer determines the minimum volume of renewable fuel that it must ensure is used in its transportation fuel.

The proposed 2013 overall volumes and standards are:

Biomass-based diesel (1.28 billion gallons; 1.12 percent)
Advanced biofuels (2.75 billion gallons; 1.60 percent)
Cellulosic biofuels (14 million gallons; 0.008 percent)
Total renewable fuels (16.55 billion gallons; 9.63 percent)

Overall, EPA’s RFS2 program encourages greater use of renewable fuels, including advanced biofuels. For 2013, the program is proposing to implement EISA’s requirement to blend more than 1.35 billion gallons of renewable fuels over the amount mandated for 2012.

More information on the standards and regulations:
http://www.epa.gov/otaq/fuels/renewablefuels/regulations.htm

More information on renewable fuels: http://www.epa.gov/otaq/fuels/renewablefuels/index.htm

Source: Lori Weaver, About.com Hybrid Cars & Alt Fuels Guide

These businesses offer CNG conversion kits and installation

Continued high gas prices have increased interest in compressed natural gas conversion kits and installation. There are a number of considerations before making the decision to convert your vehicle. However, if you plan to make the switch, the following is a list of companies providing kits and/or installation for CNG conversion.

The following information (presented alphabetically) is an update to an earlier version of this list. These are the companies I’ve found that currently sell and/or install CNG conversion kits. Please drop me a line if you find others. If I can verify the information, I’ll gladly add them to the list.
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Source: Environmental Leader.com

A study of major companies including Boots, Morrisons and Network Rail has found that companies switching to electric or plug-in vehicles could reduce their fleet fuel costs by 75 percent.

The report by the Plugged-In Fleets Initiative, a joint effort of the Energy Saving Trust, EDF Energy and Route Monkey, studied the potential savings 20 companies could make by deploying plug-in vehicles such as electric and plug-in hybrids. Participants included Schneider Electric, the London Fire Brigade, Surrey County Council, Southwark Council, Ryden Group, Tristar Chauffeurs, the University of Cumbria, Urban Planters, and York City Council.

“Plugged-In Fleets Initiative: Charging Forward”  found companies that operate vehicles with mileage below 80 miles per day would find that all-electric vehicles meet their needs on a single overnight charge.
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