Waitrose, a British supermarket chain that forms the retail division of the John Lewis Partnership, has expanded its gas powered delivery fleet with the addition of six dual-fuel trucks operating on a mix of biomethane and diesel. Business Green reports the trial combines dual-fuel benefits with vehicle aerodynamics, thereby reducing carbon emissions while improving fuel efficiency, a win-win position for operators and the environment.
According to Waitrose, distribution activity is the second largest generator of carbon equivalent emissions in our business. The company is committed to reducing absolute CO2e emissions from transport by 15 per cent by 2020 (against a 2010/11 baseline) and it has clear plans in place to help deliver its goal, including:
- Reducing mileage
- Using dual-fuel trucks
- Improving the aerodynamic performance of our vehicles
- Using biomethane as a low carbon-fuel for trucks.
Aerodynamics development is being led by David Cebon, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Cambridge University and part of the Cambridge Vehicle Dynamics Consortium, a collaboration between a group of companies from the heavy truck industry and engineers from Cambridge University who have joined forces to develop better heavy goods vehicles.
In the 2012/2013 year, Waitrose won Government funding, as part of an £11 million demonstration programme to help establish and run a fleet of 20 additional low-carbon dual-fuel heavy goods vehicles. £1 million (USD 1.65m) over four years has been secured for two separate projects.
Early 2011, Waitrose purchased five 3.5 tonne Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 316 NGT (Natural Gas Technology) panel vans for biomethane operations with fuel supplied by Gasrec, Europe’s first commercial producer of liquid biomethane.
(Sources: Waitrose, Business Green)