Hybrids – Vehicles, Battery & Hydraulic Technology

Corporate Fleets Embrace the 'Green'

March 2008, Green Fleet Magazine - Feature

by Grace Lauron - Also by this author

Greening the fleet is a growing trend not only for public sectors, but commercial fleets as well. The most commonly implemented corporate green fleet initiatives are adding hybrids to the vehicle selector and spec’ing flex-fuel vehicles. FF researched several fleets for an overview of ways to keep up with the greening frenzy.

 

Electric Vehicles ‘Deliver’ the Green

The largest fleet of hybrid-electric delivery vehicles of any U.S. transportation company, FedEx Express operates 93 hybrid-electric vehicles (HEVs) in North America. FedEx partnered with Environmental Defense and launched the first commercially available hybrid trucks in 2005. FedEx has also entered an agreement with Azure Dynamics to develop gasoline parallel hybrid-electric powertrains for delivery fleets. By May, its purchase of 20 pre-production parallel hybrid-electric Ford E-450 delivery vans will be delivered.

"FedEx Express introduced HEVs to the commercial vehicle market six years ago, and we look forward to further advancing this important, environmentally-conscious initiative with Ford and Azure Dynamics," said John Formisano, vice president, global vehicles, FedEx Express.

With the largest private global alt-fuel fleet in the transportation industry, UPS operates a 1,629-vehicle fleet that includes CNG, LNG, propane, electric, and HEV units. The company launched an initiative to use biodiesel fuel in its ground support vehicles at the UPS Worldport air hub in Louisville, and will deploy CNG trucks this year in Dallas, Atlanta, and four California cities. The Northern California UPS branch has also leased a fleet of 42 ZAP Xebra electric cars and trucks for small parcel deliveries.

Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E) added four Phoenix Motorcars all-electric sport/utility trucks (SUTs) to its clean-fuel fleet of electric and fuel-cell vehicles. "By adding the Phoenix Motorcars SUTs to our clean-fuel fleet, we are taking an important step in developing a proven and necessary electric-vehicle market. Electric vehicles provide a practical solution to help us reduce our dependency on petroleum-based fuels, keep California’s air clean, and meet the challenges associated with climate change," said Bob Howard, PG&E vice president of gas transmission and distribution.

Over the past 15 years, PG&E’s clean-fuel fleet has displaced more than 2.7 million gallons of gasoline and diesel, and helped to avoid contributing 5,000 tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.

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