Tips for greening your fleet
Fleet managers nationwide are making efforts to green their fleets, as sustainability initiatives provide a variety of benefits to their companies — cost savings, reduced environmental impact and an enhanced public image.
Research conducted by PEAK Commercial & Industrial reveals that the overwhelming reason fleet managers choose to implement green fleet programs is ultimately because of financial benefits over time. According to Ted Roberts, COO & Chief Content Officer of Fleet Management Weekly, there are numerous direct financial rewards for sustainability management as alternative technologies and sustainable options are becoming less expensive and more accessible to fleet professionals.
As the transportation industry evolves, it is clear that green fleets will continue to grow in popularity. A green fleet program guides sustainability priorities, sets goals to reduce emissions or increase fuel economy, and measures a fleet’s performance toward achieving these goals. While some fleet managers believe that a green fleet must make costly upgrades and focus on the operation of hybrids, pure electrics, or using a clean alternative fuel, in reality, any initiative that significantly reduces a fleet’s environmental impact can be considered green.
Industry experts emphasize the significance of the relationship between the transportation industry and sustainability. “Over the next five years, this relationship will become more integrated and more entrenched,” Roberts says. “The line between ‘standard’ and ‘sustainable’ transportation options will begin to erode as the ‘sustainable’ options become commonplace among fleet professionals,”
To assist fleet managers in their development and application of green fleet practices, PEAK has shared the below tips for implementing a green fleet program that maximizes an operation’s effectiveness and profitability while minimizing its environmental impact.
1. Carefully and systematically look at all of the options available. According to Roberts, this is the most important thing any fleet manager can do. The best solution is likely to be a combination of things — factors like rebates, prices, and incentives will certainly come into play. 2. Recognize that fleet sustainability programs are part of a long-term initiative. The green-fleet transition will not happen overnight and is best implemented when fleet professionals include sustainability practices in a company’s long-term strategy for success. According to research from PEAK Commercial & Industrial, 72% of fleet professionals who plan to implement a green fleet plan will do so in the next 1-3 years, giving fleet professionals adequate time to explore all available options and make the optimal decision for their companies. 3. Utilize telematics systems to increase fleet efficiency and reduce the cost of fleet operations.Telematics systems, which continue to expand, provide insights to maximize fuel conservation by addressing fuel-wasting driving behaviors and providing insights on optimal modifications, such as route planning, engine feedback and improving dispatch times by coordinating with technicians who are nearest to a job. 4. Maximize the use of available engine technologies. Industry regulations have led to the widespread use of Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology, which poses significant benefits to fleet managers looking to reduce emissions and maximize fuel efficiency. However, fleet managers must be careful to use products such as diesel exhaust fluid, like BlueDEF, correctly to guarantee their fleets obtain all potential savings. 5. Maintain your vehicles. Make sure each one of your fleet’s vehicles is serviced regularly. Ensuring that vehicles have fresh oil and clean air filters will promote your green fleet initiative by limiting vehicle repair costs, maximizing fuel efficiency and reducing harmful emissions. Keeping the engine tuned and regularly checking and refreshing fluid levels also helps to reduce the stress placed on engine parts. Read More Read More