Future Becoming Clearer?

There’s lots going on in the fuel efficiency world these days.  I feel like I’ve seen the “future for trucking” pretty clearly over the past few weeks.

As I mentioned in an earlier blog post, we recently released our annual Fleet Fuel Study. The 14 fleets that participated were able to save nearly half a billion dollars in 2014 by adopting a variety of fuel efficiency technologies.

SuperTrucks are delivering on their promises. I was an official assessor for the Department of Energy’s Annual Merit Review for these projects and heard the results and status of all four teams. Pretty impressive stuff, with some features already offerings by tractor and trailer builders, others coming soon and yet others needing cost and performance improvements, but have been integrated, built and tested.

I’ve discussed various levels of autonomous truck operation with all sorts of people interested in how this approach can help companies and drivers be more efficient.  And digging into the probable barriers to adoption. 

It was fun for me to recently spend a day with Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Carbon War Room, NACFE’s partner in forming Trucking Efficiency. One thing I can say about Richard is that he knows business and can see opportunities and linkages where others don’t.  He was excited to hear about the progress we are making with Trucking Efficiency and the opportunities that are emerging with respect to advanced technologies coming to the real world with Super Trucks and with the game changing opportunities on the horizon like platooning and autonomous trucks.  I could see his mind racing, thinking about the impacts.

And finally, we now know the proposed levels of efficiency in the second round of greenhouse gas emissions standards released on Friday, June 19th.  EPA and NHSTA state a 24% fuel economy improvement by 2027, using technologies that they predict will have a two year payback.  We’ll have more to say on the standards when we fully understand them and can discuss with others in the industry.  And as always, we will continue our part to bring you unbiased information on helping fleets improve their overall freight efficiency and manufacturers deliver robust solutions. 

Not sure how fast all of this will occur, but I think the future is exciting and becoming clearer!

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