Refuse & Other Vocational Trucks
Factory Direct Availability
Natural gas trucks are available from most truck manufacturers whose products are used for refuse applications including Mack, Peterbilt, Freightliner, Autocar, American LaFrance, and Freightliner. These trucks incorporate dedicated natural gas engine technology from Canadian company Cummins Westport. Fleet daily fuel needs can be met with a range of fuel tank capacities and configurations. Kelowna, British Columbia-based Enviromech Industries is one of North America’s leading suppliers of modular natural gas fuel storage systems for heavy trucks and buses including refuse trucks.
Natural gas refuse trucks do not require diesel particulate filters or selective catalytic reduction to meet 2010 emission standards. The Cummins Westport ISL G was actually the first engine to comply with 2010 standards and it did so three years early in 2007. The ISL G uses a simple maintenance-free, three-way catalyst. Reduced levels of nitrogen oxide emissions associated with natural gas engines are achieved without the need for selective catalytic reduction that relies on urea to neutralize nitrogen oxide emissions. As emission standards have increased in stringency, diesel engines have had to increase in complexity to reduce exhaust emissions. Diesel and natural gas now achieve the same tailpipe standards, but the Cummins Westport ISL G is able to comply using simpler technology.
Environmental & Fuel Cost Benefits
Natural gas provides a way to decrease lifecycle carbon emissions, reduce noise levels, and lower the per kilometer cost of fuel. According to Natural Resources Canada’s lifecycle emissions model GHGenius, the carbon benefit is an estimated 18% or 12 tonnes less carbon for a natural gas refuse truck driven 45,000 kilometers per year. Natural gas refuse trucks have less noise at idle with a more than 10 decibel difference at idle compared with diesel refuse trucks. Natural gas is typically 20-30% less expensive than diesel fuel, so costs per kilometer can be reduced. Natural gas refuse trucks can also operate on renewable biomethane produced by upgrading landfill gas or other biogas. The benefits of natural gas for municipal refuse truck fleets were highlighted in the January 2009 edition of Municipal World.
Other Vocational Trucks
In addition to refuse trucks, the Cummins Westport ISL G powers an increasing number of vocational trucks. As noted, natural gas can provide a way to decrease lifecycle carbon emissions, reduce noise levels, and lower the per kilometer cost of fuel. Enbridge Gas Distribution recently purchased five medium duty, single axle natural gas dump trucks for its fleet. These vehicles offer power and performance characteristics similar to diesel trucks while operating on a lower cost and lower carbon fuel. Two of the trucks are Freightliner M2 112s, one of which was on display at Truck World 2010.