Delivery trucks are increasingly hybrids that sip diesel and gasoline instead of gulping. Thousands of trucks are now all-electric. 4.5 million vehicles in the U.S. are short-haul delivery vehicles. Although it would be impractical to get a big long-haul truck across the nation on electricity, it can be practical to charge 100 short-haul delivery trucks at the warehouse where they load.
Balqon Corporation is now offering for sale a battery-electric tow tractor for moving semi trailers around port yards and distribution warehouse centers. Port of Los Angeles has about 600 of these type of vehicles, the Port of Long Beach about 400 and the Port of San Diego 15.
Solar is powering more vehicles. American’s have reduced their use of petroleum 5 percent this year. So far, petroleum reduction is the result of fewer miles traveled solo as people cut travel to deal with high gas prices and a slowing economy. At the Solar Power International conference, one notable area of growth is solar covered parking structures with vehicle charging – a cool solution for a planet that is getting hotter.
The key to FedEx’s future is continued improvements in efficiency. Customers look to FedEx to handle shipment, logistics and delivery better than competitive alternatives. One challenge for FedEx is controlling fuel costs including jet fuel, diesel and gasoline.
With oil topping $100 per barrel, FedEx is also investing in hybrid, alt-fuel, and electric vehicles. FedEx hybrids have accumulated more than 1,000,000 miles in revenue service.100 diesel hybrids are in service globally, primarily in the U.S; 75 more hybrids will be added in 2008. The hybrids are an excellent investment with a 42% improvement in fuel economy.
Most oil consumption and greenhouse gas emissions from transportation are not from passenger vehicles; they are from the heavy-duty vehicles, ships, and planes that move all our goods, serve public transit, and provide the infrastructure that keeps cities running. Heavy-duty operators have often been years ahead of passenger vehicle owners in using advanced technology to do more with less fuel. Article describes use of hybrids, plug-in hybrids, idle-off, natural gas, hydrogen fuel cells, energy security and green supply chains.
Wal-Mart operates the nation’s second largest private fleet. Wal-Mart is also famous for being operationally efficient. Every large fleet and logistics operator hopes to save millions by learning from Wal-Mart’s new initiatives. Wal-Mart has hundreds of hybrid passenger vehicles. Now Wal-Mart sees bigger potential savings in heavy-duty Class 8 trucks.