Andersen to Convert to CNG Fleet
Andersen Corp. is marking the beginning of an effort to convert its transportation fleet to compressed natural gas with the opening of a fueling station today near its Menomonie, Wis., plant. The conversion to CNG is designed to reduce both operating costs and carbon dioxide emissions for the window and door manufacturer.
The conversion of the first seven trucks to CNG will reduce their emissions by 28 percent per year, the company reports. The total savings that Andersen will gain in moving to CNG will range between $1.25 and $1.75 per gallon, depending on the market price of diesel.
The CNG station is the result of a partnership between Andersen, Dart Transit, U.S. Oil, Breakthrough Fuel, and Xcel Energy. The project uses Dart Transit’s Eco Tractor powered by U.S. Oil’s CNG supply program to provide the fuel, and Breakthrough Fuel’s fuel management process to both track the program’s results and pinpoint opportunities to make the program even more efficient, Andersen officials note. Grants from the Wisconsin State Energy Office were also awarded to support this project.
“We believe finding new ways to use alternative energy is one way to help restore economic growth for everyone, and this project shows how the rubber literally meets the road,” says Lance Whitacre, Andersen's VP, logistics. “Leveraging this unique partnership today yields far-reaching benefits for us that improve the triple bottom line–good for people, profitable for companies and beneficial for the environment.”
Andersen plans to add more trucks to the program, noting that natural gas vehicles show an average reduction in ozone-forming emissions of 80 percent compared to diesel-powered vehicles. Additionally, more than 99 percent of the natural gas used in the United States comes from domestic or other North American sources. CNG has the lowest price, lowest emissions and an extensive infrastructure in place, but less than half of the 1,000 CNG filling stations in place in North America are truck-friendly, officials note.