America started down the road toward cleaner, more fuel-efficient freight trucks this week.
President Obama, joined by leading freight truck manufacturers and major fleet owners, announced plans to draft a second generation of fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas standards for America’s heavy-duty trucks.
The new standards will build on the successful first round, which are yielding far-reaching benefits for America’s security, economy and environment.
As the President said in his 2014 State of the Union Address:
We’ve partnered with businesses, builders, and local communities to reduce the energy we consume. When we rescued our automakers, for example, we worked with them to set higher fuel efficiency standards for our cars. In the coming months, I’ll build on that success by setting new standards for our trucks, so we can keep driving down oil imports and what we pay at the pump.
Climate pollution from our nation’s freight trucks is projected to increase by more than 130 million tons between now and 2040 – the largest increase in emissions from any single end-use, according to the Energy Information Administration.
Recent analyses, however, indicate that rigorous second generation fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas standards for new freight trucks can cost-effectively reduce this climate pollution, improve our nation’s energy security, and save truckers money.
- By 2025, strong second generation truck standards could reduce fuel consumption by up to 40 percent compared to 2010. That’s more than 800,000 barrels of oil savings per day beyond what’s achieved by current standards.
- Most technologies needed to achieve this reduction have payback periods of three years or less.
Making our nation’s fleet of trucks more efficient is also good for consumers.
Improving efficiency means cutting the costs associated with transporting goods. That means companies can sell those goods for less, which in turn means that American families will save money.
A recent report by the Consumer Federation of America found:
- Net savings of $250 to consumers, rising to $400 per household in 2035 as fuel prices and transportation services increase.
Cost-effective, made-in-America solutions are available to help achieve these important environmental, economic and energy security benefits.
- Truck transmission manufacturer Eaton has launched a powertrain package that can improve fuel efficiency by up to 6 percent.
- Cummins and Peterbilt partnered last year to build a truck that averaged 9.9 miles a gallon in road tests last fall. They did it by deploying a suite of improvements–including capturing otherwise wasted heat and converting it to energy.
- SmartTruck Systems supplies innovative aerodynamic trailer products that can cut fuel consumption from combination tractor-trailers by over 10 percent through advanced aerodynamics.
Rigorous second-generation clean trucks standards can help deploy these made-in-America technologies.
Strong standards are also critical to spur investment and innovation leading to the next generation of clean truck solutions.