OTA members Erb Transport and Canadian Tire were featured in a report done by the Pembina Institute – a leading environmental advocacy group in Canada – of trucking companies that have implemented a wide range of solutions and methods to reduce emissions from their heavy-duty diesel vehicles, by continuing to implement new practices and employ aerodynamic devices to reduce fuel consumption and remain environmentally conscious operators.
The report mentions that because of their initial success with side skirts, Erb Transport has tested/adopted a wide range of fuel-saving devices, including aerodynamic tractors, side skirts, trailer tails, low rolling resistance dual tires, tire pressure monitoring and automatic inflation systems, eco mudflaps, as well as a stationary fifth wheel on the tractor to keep the tractor-trailer gap consistent. These combined measures have led to fuel savings of upwards of 9%, a significant boost to their bottom line.
“With my owner-operators, a lot of them had driven an older classic truck that’s not aerodynamic but looks cool going down the road. I was able to show them that if they got one mile to the gallon better with a new truck, they would be able to make their truck payment just with the fuel economy that they’re saving. That was probably back when fuel was US$4 a gallon… but honestly, the economic side of saving money is by far the driving force,” said Wendell Erb, OTA Chair and president and CEO, Erb Transport.
The Pembina report also highlighted Canadian Tire’s involvement in the long-combination vehicle (LCV) program, and their ability to gain fuel efficiencies through the use of these vehicles, as opposed to two single tractors trailers, leading to a 30% reduction in GHG emissions with these vehicles.
“For us, anytime you can move more goods with less tractor power [whether through the adoption of LCVs or longer containers], it’s a huge win. It’s less trucks on the road, and it’s better for the environment, so we’re extremely excited about scaling and maximizing that opportunity,” said Gary Fast, vice-president, transportation, Canadian Tire
The report stresses that these case studies paint a picture of what can be achieved in the trucking sector to reduce emissions and fuel consumption in the interim, although permanent solutions leading to more significant reductions from the long-haul trucking sector are still many years away.
A full copy of the Pembina report can be found here: https://www.pembina.org/pub/long-haul-trucking-fleets-take-emission-reductions-their-own-hands