Waste Management (WM) opened thirteen compressed natural gas (CNG) fuelling stations across the USA in the first half of 2012, including 9 that are accessible by the public. This brings WM’s natural gas stations to 31, with another 17 either in operation or in construction by the end of 2012. The company owns the stations, purchases the fuel and finances the construction of the stations.
It also enters into maintenance contracts with third party companies. This strategy allows WM to secure better natural gas prices in the long run.
To optimize costs, the company’s preferred platform for these stations is to time-fill its trucks according to a set schedule. The trucks use a slow-fill method, which carry approximately 70 diesel gallon equivalents (DGE) of CNG – a capacity that allows them to run for 10 to 12 hours and complete a typical day’s waste or recycling collection route.
For public accessible fueling stations that serve commercial and consumer vehicles, fast-fill capability is installed. The self-service Clean N’ Green Fuel stations are open 24/7 and accept major credit cards as well as fleet cards.
“Those facilities with publicly accessible stations offer fueling solutions to other corporate fleets and consumers as more and more North Americans turn to vehicles fueled by CNG,” said Eric Woods, vice president of fleet and logistics for Waste Management.
WM’s rapidly growing natural gas fleet, now nearly 1,700 CNG and liquefied (LNG) vehicles, is the largest in North American waste industry. In 2012, natural gas vehicles will represent 80 percent of annual new truck purchases, with that pattern set to continue for the next five years.
Each heavy-duty diesel collection vehicle replaced with natural gas reduces diesel use by an average of 8,000 gallons per year and cuts annual greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 22 metric tons. The trucks are also significantly quieter than traditional diesel engines.
Compressed natural gas (CNG) is one of the cleanest fuels currently available for use in heavy-duty trucks, hel;ping the company to make significant progress on its sustainability goals to reduce emissions by 15 percent and increase the fuel efficiency of its fleet by 15 percent by the year 2020. By replacing a typical diesel engine with a natural gas engine WM reduces:
- up to 86 percent of air particulates
- 80 percent in carbon monoxide
- up to 50 percent in nitrogen oxides
- 25 percent in carbon dioxide
In 2011, the Clean Vehicle Education Foundation honored WM with its Natural Gas Vehicle (NGV) Achievement award for its “innovative leadership” in the company’s transformation to a natural gas fleet. In addition, Energy Vision honored Waste Management for its “strategic vision and leadership” in rolling out 1,000 CNG vehicles and opening its Altamont Landfill producing renewable energy gas for the fleet.
(This article compiled using information from a Waste management Inc press release)