Ryder System, Inc., a commercial transportation, logistics and supply chain management solutions company, has been selected by UBCR, LLC as its fleet partner in a Michigan natural gas project that includes 16 heavy duty natural gas vehicles, upgrades to two maintenance facilities, and the construction of two new natural gas fueling stations. UBCR, formed out of a joint venture between Schupan and Sons, Inc. and Tomra North America, operates a single source solution for the collection, transportation and processing of aluminum cans, polyethylene terephthalate (PET), and glass beverage containers from Michigan’s largest grocery retailers.
The natural gas project is partially funded by a grant to UBCR through the Michigan Clean Cities Coalition and when complete, will displace 380,000 gallons of diesel fuel annually with domestically produced low carbon natural gas.
Through the project, UBCR will be converting its entire 16-vehicle fleet to compressed natural gas vehicles, leased from and maintained by Ryder. To support UBCR’s fleet operations, Ryder will retrofit two of its existing maintenance facilities in Livonia and Grand Rapids, Michigan, for the proper and safe indoor servicing of natural gas vehicles. This is Ryder’s first natural gas project with UBCR, and the latest in a series of new natural gas vehicle projects announced with customers in various markets including Southern California and Arizona.
“Ryder became the first fleet provider to offer heavy-duty natural gas vehicles for the leasing and rental industry through our ground-breaking natural gas vehicle project with the San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG) in Southern California,” said Robert Sanchez, President of Global Fleet Management Solutions for Ryder. “This project in Michigan leverages that experience and demonstrates our ability to bring real-world environmental benefits to other markets.”
In addition, UBCR is working with DTE Energy, to construct fueling stations in Wixom and Grand Rapids, Michigan. The Grand Rapids fueling location will provide for public access to natural gas fueling, while the Wixom location will be a dedicated station to support UBCR’s fleet operations.
UBCR will take delivery of the compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles in December 2011. Its fleet supports an around-the-clock operation that recovers used beverage containers annually from major retailers within a 200-mile radius of its Wixom and Grand Rapids locations. UBCR’s services meet the unique deposit container pickup and processing needs of soft drink and beer/wine wholesalers as part of the Michigan Beverage Associations’ Third Party Container Pickup and Processing Program.
(This article compiled using information from a Ryder System, Inc. press release)