What is the Future of Trucking Equipment? CTA Launches a National Consultation Workshop

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This June, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will be putting a new rule in place regarding greenhouse gas regulations for heavy trucks.
Environment Canada is expected to follow the EPA’s lead, requiring that suppliers of heavy trucks, along with engines and trailer manufacturers, sell technologies to their customers that will measure their levels of compliance with these new environmental rules. Good news for those hoping to pursue auto mechanic training, since the new rule will require modifications that mean an upsurge of business for mechanics.
Since Canada will be implementing the rule originally set by the EPA, the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) wants to make sure that the Canadian requirements come with compliance credits for manufacturers that match Canadian operating needs. In an effort to get info from the carrier community on what technology they would like to implement and which they would like to avoid, the CTA in partnership with provincial trucking associations, will conduct a series of consultation workshops across the country throughout the month of May.
Let’s take a look at the EPA’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and also some of the green trucking technology that’s out there today, to see if we can get a better idea of what the new rule will mean for Canadian truckers.

Reducing Emissions from Transportation

According to the EPA, transportation is responsible for 27% of total US greenhouse gas emissions, making it the second-largest contributor after the electricity sector.
The regulations and standards set by the EPA are coordinated steps to enable the production of a new generation of clean vehicles—cars as well as trucks. Automotive schools are already gearing themselves toward electric and hybrid vehicle repair, since their production is increasing due to environmental regulations such as these.

The EPA’s efforts are also include ensuring that fuel sold in the US contains a minimum amount of reusable product.

Green Efforts in the Transport Sector

There are a variety of ways to reduce emissions and increase fuel efficiency that are currently being applied in all areas of transportation, and taught in automotive training centers. These methods include:

  • Switching to biofuel or fuels with less harmful emissions. Alternative sources include hydrogen or renewable electricity in the case of electric and hybrid vehicles.
  • Using advanced technologies, design, and materials to develop more fuel-efficient vehicles. This includes expansion of hybrid technology, using lighter materials to reduce overall vehicle weight and reducing aerodynamic drag on vehicles through better shape design.

The Walmart WAVE Truck

In 2014, Walmart unveiled their WAVE (Walmart Advanced Vehicle Experience) truck as a perfect example of how modern trucks can implement new green technologies and approaches.
WAVE’s body is built with lightweight carbon fiber, making it 4000 pounds lighter than traditional models. The truck also produces 20% less aerodynamic drag than those currently in Walmart’s fleet. WAVE runs on a microturbine that uses a combination of natural gases and other fuels, and can automatically choose the most efficient of three modes to run on — charge, electric or hybrid electric.
Walmart won’t be putting a fleet of WAVE trucks on the road anytime soon, but it’s refreshing to see all of the green standards combined in one vehicle.
How else do you think the trucking industry can become greener?

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