At a ceremony in Jackson, Mississippi, Waste Management has opened its 50th natural gas fueling station, a further move toward the company’s sustainability goals of reducing its fleet emissions and increasing its fuel efficiency.
“This is a significant milestone for us as we convert our heavy-duty collection fleet to natural gas,” said Eric Woods, VP of fleet supply chain for Waste Management in a July 31, 2013 statement to media. “For each diesel truck produced in 2006 or earlier that we replace with a natural gas one, we see an average annual reduction of 8,000 gallons of diesel and 22 metric tonnes of greenhouse gases.”
Woods added that with the company’s 32,000 collection and support vehicles, the conversion makes good business sense because of the significant maintenance and diesel fuel costs savings.
Considered one of the cleanest alternative fuels available for heavy-duty trucks in the transportation industry, compressed natural gas (CNG) fuel will also be made available to Jackson municipalities, businesses and the public through the new CNG retail station.
Of the company’s 50 fueling stations across North America, 18 are accessible to the public. Waste Management owns the stations, purchases the fuel and funds their construction, a strategy that allows the company to secure competitive prices.
Waste Management has been a pioneer and national leader in the use of natural gas for heavy duty trucks since the 1990s. The company already operates more than 2,200 alternatively fueled vehicles with the largest fleet of natural gas collection trucks in North America.
In 2007, as part of its corporate sustainability goals, Waste Management committed to increase its fleet’s fuel efficiency by 15 per cent and reduce its fleet emissions by 15 per cent by 2020. The company accomplished a 20 per cent reduction in fleet emissions by the end of 2011, beating its goal by nine years.
“Natural gas-powered collection trucks run cleaner and quieter, providing our customers and communities with a top-notch level of customer service and minimal impact on the environment,” said James Funderburg, senior district manager, Waste Management of Jackson in a statement to media. “We are dedicated to providing our customers with outstanding service while doing business in a sustainable manner.”