going green ecolabellingGoing green and offering “sustainable” products and services is the cool thing to do, but the tough part is figuring out what ‘going green’ and ‘being sustainable’ actually means. It’s tough not only for consumers, but also for companies who are (or want) to be green and to reduce carbon emissions and all that good stuff, but aren’t sure how let customers know or prove what they are doing is actually great for the environment. The EcoLabel Index is just the place for that, a comprehensive site collecting data on ecolabels all around the world, increasing transparency and helping buyers and sellers use them more effectively. Use the index to learn what ecolabel means when it’s placed on a product or associated with a company, as well as learn which certifications and labels could fit your company and what it’s doing.

Below are a few certifications and ecolabels that would be of interest to managed fleets, transportation directors, and logistics companies that want proof and recognition for what they are doing to reduce environmental impact and to offset carbon emissions.

EPA Smartway

This certification identifies vehicles that reduce harmful emissions of carbon dioxide and air pollutants, improve fuel efficiency, and ensure a cleaner environment. It also comes with a Green Vehicle Guide to let consumers know which vehicles are the best when it comes to reducing air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. The EPA Smartway is a good choice for managed fleets and transportation companies that want to use green vehicles and hybrid tires everyday, as well as implement tactics in other parts of the business to improve sustainability.

FedEx EarthSmart Solutions

The FedEx EarthSmart Solution is an internal company designation for any of their assets — including planes, trucks and facilities — that meet environmental sustainability criteria. To get it, you must meet your own sustainability standards (this means that your company must have sustainability standards) and you must exceed industry standards and practices. The goal here is to recognize those who are reducing emissions and improving energy efficiency. The FedEx EarthSmart Solution website offers a variety of ways for companies and managed fleets to achieve those goals.

Cleaner and Greener Certification

This is one of the few programs in the United States that emphasizes the reporting and offsetting of emissions by transportation fleets, although they do include buildings and other companies also. The Cleaner and Greener Certification consists of several levels, which depend on your level of carbon emission offsets and effort of environmental impact reduction. Associated with the Leonard Academy, they also offer training services for those who want to start an emissions inventory and want to know their exact environmental impact.

Overall, it’s very possible for managed fleets and others in transportation and logistics to learn what’s available in terms of going green, how to go green, and how to be recognized for that hard work and effort. Even though your customers are other businesses, certification and recognition can do a lot for branding and building trust with potential customers.

Fleets Can Definitely Do Something

Think managed fleets and the transportation industry can’t do much to go green? Think your customers don’t care whether or not your fleet or trucking company goes green or does something in sustainability? Then you’re thinking wrong! This myth is one of nine we bust in our latest white paper: 9 Debunked Myths on Nitrogen Tire Inflation. Click the link to download this white paper and to learn how nitrogen tire inflation can help your managed fleet.

Related Links:

Managed Fleets and Ending America’s Dependence on Foreign Oil

A Fourth Way the Trucking Industry Can Go Green

Managed Fleets Large and Small Improve Bottom Line with Nitrogen Tire Inflation

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saving fuel managed fleetsThis is a guest post from Eve Pearce.

The road miles traveled by the things we buy make headlines. From food producers to restaurant owners, emphasis is proudly placed on produce that is sourced locally and, hence, hasn’t traveled too far, or for too long, to get to your basket or plate. This is not surprising as there is not much downside to growing vegetables nearby and then eating them: it is healthy, often very economical, and helps local farmers and businesses to flourish. It is often exactly such straightforward thinking that can make significant differences when it comes to economy and the environment.

Optimizing Gas Usage Saves Emissions, Fuel and Time

Efficiency of transportation is not something that only applies to food. Increasing energy prices, levels of greenhouse gas emissions and the need to reduce reliance on fossil fuels all mean that using the resources we have in the most economical way possible is a focal point in the way forward for many industries. It is also the source of much innovation.

Take, for example, GoNitroTire and NitroFleet99 network of services which use nitrogen, as opposed to air, to inflate vehicle tires. This is an idea that, in an economy of scale, can save vast amounts of time and money for those managing fleets.

A look at the prominence of transport in terms of energy usage really brings home how significant an issue this is. Transportation counts for around 11% of carbon consumption in the United States. Finding ways to use fuel more efficiently is, therefore, fundamental to anyone who manages a fleet.

In the U.S. some 400 million gallons of fuel are used each day. Collectively, haulage fleets using tires filled with nitrogen, rather than air, saved this amount during 2007. This, in turn, saved 4 million tons of carbon emissions. As well as saving energy, a great deal of time which might be spent checking and adjusting tire pressures is also saved, and this can lead to greater efficiency.

The reason for this increase in efficiency is that nitrogen has larger molecules than oxygen (which makes up around 23% of air), and so does not leak out of the tire as quickly. Logistics firms and distributors work hard to optimize delivery routes and combine deliveries, and cutting down on road miles and fuel consumption has become a fine art. GoNitroTire are able to lease machinery to supply several bays in a depot, or to inflate a number of car tires simultaneously. This includes options for purging air from the tires, or simply topping up with nitrogen.

Saving Fuel, Helping the Environment

Cutting down on fuel usage is important for the reputation of the haulage industry and in terms of protecting our environment. Being able to reassure clients that goods are being transported to them in as green a way as possible is sound marketing in world where the carbon footprint of each stage in the cycle of goods reaching their market is scrutinized. Large vehicles are very visible to other road users and have a responsibility to use the roads as safely and efficiently as possible as a courtesy to other road users as well as the buyers of the goods they transport. Keeping vehicles safe and efficient is also important in terms of maintaining a fleet in good working order, and this will include HGV insurance as well as servicing and regular maintenance (including tire pressure checks).

In terms of the bigger picture relating to energy usage and the environment, inflating tires with nitrogen, rather than air, saves on gasoline, thus cutting down on our reliance on imported fuel. Any increase in energy self-sufficiency is important for energy security which is focal in energy policy in many other countries, including the UK. Being reliant on imported fuel opens up duel uncertainties in terms of price and supply. A shortage in the latter can lead to stores quickly diminishing. Similarly, fluctuations in price can be crippling to the haulage industry, and have a knock-on effect in other markets.

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managed fleets nitrogen tire inflationNitrogen tire inflation is still a new technology, one that has yet to be widely adopted by managed fleets as a way to go “GREEN” while improving the fleet’s efficiency and the company’s bottom line. Although it has been embraced by entities such as the airline industry and NASCAR for decades, it remains out of the mainstream. Some fleet managers and transportation directors have never heard of using nitrogen for tire inflation, or may be skeptical that this application is just a gimmick. Others may just be reluctant to change from compressed air, which has worked well all this time, or are hesitant to invest money into a process they know very little about.

Why Nitrogen Tire Inflation is a Great Way to Go Green

Regardless, myths about nitrogen tire inflation are generally used to influence fleet managers and transportation directors away from nitrogen’s use in their vehicles. One of those big myths is that nitrogen tire inflation cannot contribute to ending America’s dependence on foreign oil. This is absolutely not true, especially when you consider that 70% of the fuel consumption in this country is used by the transportation sector. Anything and everything to reduce that number will contribute. Here, we are providing transparency and in-depth clarity on WHY nitrogen tire inflation is not a scam or a gimmick, but a viable way to create hybrid tires, to reduce the U.S. dependence on foreign oil and to improve a company’s environmental footprint through carbon reduction and sustainable practices for future generations of Americans.

When 11% of our carbon consumption is in the transportation sector, and 400 million gallons of gas are consumed every day in the United States, it’s simplistic to say that a few percentage points of improvement in fuel efficiency won’t do much of anything to solve the problem. Those few points add up significantly as more managed fleets make the change to nitrogen. When over 300 million tires are disposed of in landfills every year in the United States, it is completely short sighted to say that nitrogen tire inflation can’t do anything to reduce that number. Nitrogen tire inflation can improve the life of the tire and tread-wear rate and reduce the number of tires purchased by managed fleets. The impact on America’s dependence on foreign oil is relative and is completely tied to Economy of Scale, but the impact becomes DRAMATIC when a managed vehicle fleet, such as the Federal government’s, of over 660,000 vehicles is using nitrogen as an inflation medium – the argument for ALL of the points made here for nitrogen’s use in tires becomes that much more compelling.

Nitrogen Tire Inflation Can Contribute

The cost for replacement tires have increased between 6 and 9 percent per year for the past several years. To have proven green technologies helping managed fleets absorb costs and getting the best ROI for their tires is our goal. Nitrogen tire inflation is not only a sound investment; it‘s sustainability factor in carbon reduction and reducing waste in our environment makes nitrogen‘s use a responsible transportation solution for the 21st century. We’ve busted nine nitrogen tire inflation myths that have previously moved fleet managers and transportation directors away from its use and have provided clarity and a strong, sensible, scientific logic to better all of our understanding as we rapidly look for solutions to preserve our planet and reduce oil consumption.

This myth is just one of nine big myths about nitrogen tire inflation, and we’ve debunked all nine in our latest white paper: 9 Debunked Myths on Nitrogen Tire Inflation. Click the link to download this white paper and to learn how nitrogen tire inflation can help your managed fleet and our country’s dependence on foreign oil.

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nitrogen tire inflation for managed fleetsThere’s still a lot of doubt about the value of nitrogen tire inflation, despite research and experience that say otherwise. Even though it may be hard to convince the consumer marketing about the benefits of having nitrogen in tires, industry should take a little less convincing when major companies and industries like the military, the airlines, and NASCAR have used nitrogen tire inflation for years. If you are in fleet management, and you still need a little more convincing, here are six excellent reasons on why nitrogen tire inflation is a good idea for your managed fleet:

  1. Better Pressure Retention – Because of its larger molecular size, nitrogen migrates through a tire three to four times slower than oxygen. Tires are not impermeable, and oxygen molecules migrate through the sidewalls, belts, tread, tire bead, and valve stem. Using nitrogen tire inflation will slow this migration, and help each of your fleet vehicles to maintain proper tire pressure for a longer period of time.
  2. Improved Handling – Proper tire inflation ensure the recommended “contact patch” of your tire is on the road. Tires that are over or underinflated will create uneven wear patterns, making them less safe on which to drive. Over/underinflation also negatively affects fuel efficiency, which leads to our next reason.
  3. Higher Fuel Economy Proper tire pressure lessens rolling resistance and maximizes fuel efficiency. Research has found that proper tire pressure leads to a 3.3% increase in fuel efficiency. This may not seem like a lot, but for a managed fleet with 100, 1000, or 10,000+ vehicles, those few percentage points add mean a return on investment for nitrogen tire inflation and fuel cost savings in the long run. A tire that is 15 percent underinflated has a 2.5% decrease in fuel economy.
  4. Enhanced Safety and Reliability – Under-inflated tires cause 90 percent of blowouts. Nitrogen provides more reliable pressure for reduced blowout potential. Safety and reliability should be a top priority for all members of a managed fleet.
  5. Longer Tire Life – Under-inflated tires wear quickly on the shoulders, and overinflated tires wear in the center. In addition, removing oxygen eliminates oxidation and condensation that can damage inner liners, steel belts and rims. Proper tire pressure, which nitrogen maintains for a longer period of time than air, increases tire life by 20 percent. A tire that’s 15 percent underinflated has eight percent less tread mileage than one at proper tire pressure. The increase in tire life could mean savings in tire expenses or in retreads for a managed fleet.
  6. Better for the Environment – Anything that improves fuel efficiency and reduces toxic emissions is good for the environment, and nitrogen in your tires can help. Anything that your managed fleet does that’s considered “green” or “sustainable” is also great for marketing purposes, since it’s a way not only to differentiate from the competition but also to appeal to customers.
Sometimes, one small change in how you do things can have a big impact. Nitrogen tire inflation is one of those small changes. Nitrofleet99 is the only nitrogen tire inflation provider that works specifically with managed fleet. They can help any fleet, large or small, integrate the equipment with any maintenance program 
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trucking industry going greenThe trucking industry is vital to just about everything. The produce at your grocery store, the new television at Best Buy, and the new cars at the dealership all get where they need to be because of trucks. Despite their overall importance to the economy, the way the industry works has remained largely unchanged for decades. One of the ways they haven’t changed is in their fuel efficiency and consumption, and this post on GreenUnite offers three ways the trucking industry can go green. However, the article missed a fourth way the trucking industry can go green, a way that is so much easier to implement than the three mentioned in the article. That way is nitrogen tire inflation.

Nitrogen tire inflation is the process of using nitrogen in tires instead of regular air, and with the right equipment, it can be implemented in a managed fleet more quickly and easily than reducing speed (truckers are on tight deadlines, and can’t afford to waste precious time by going slow, or to lose business for slower deliveries), using alternative fuels (the truck takes what the truck takes. Hybrid 18-wheelers aren’t yet on the market, and until they are, this isn’t possible), or building a more aerodynamic truck (again, until one comes on the market, nothing’s changing). The great thing about nitrogen tire inflation as a way for managed fleets and the trucking industry to go green is that it is something that individual fleets or trucking companies can do on their own, and tomorrow. The technology already exists, and a single fleet can purchase this technology and do their part to go green without waiting for legislation, or innovators, or the industry to make changes themselves.

Nitrogen tire inflation helps a managed fleet or trucking company go green in two ways: improving fuel efficiency and improving tire life. The process of using nitrogen in tires has been found to improve fuel efficiency between three and six percent because nitrogen is able to maintain proper tire pressure for a longer period of time. Three to six percent improvement may not seem like a lot, but for a managed fleet of several hundred or thousand vehicles, that equals a lot of savings in fuel and transportation costs. If anything, improved fuel efficiency should be enough of a reason to go green, because it’s a way to go green while saving green

Nitrogen also improves tire life because it’s not necessarily nitrogen that’s so special, but it’s the oxygen and water vapor in compressed air that’s damaging to tires. Oxygen reacts with the tire rubber, causing it to deteriorate over a long period of time. An improvement in tire life could mean that managed fleets could get one more retread out of each tire. The water vapor can also do damage to the wheel studs by rusting them over time. Water vapor is also much more reactive to temperature, causing tire pressure to fluctuate. The tires will warm up after a drive, and could be read as overinflated if tire pressure is taken right after getting off the road. This means that the driver will release the pressure, making them underinflated. This can make the tires unsafe to drive on by putting them at risk for flats and blowouts.

How does a managed fleet or trucking company get involved with nitrogen tire inflation? Nitrofleet99 is a the only nitrogen tire inflation firm in the country that services managed fleets, and will work with your fleet or your company to create a strategy within your maintenance infrastructure so that every single one of your vehicles will receive nitrogen in their tires when they go through regular maintenance. Nitrofleet99 will also teach you how to use the technology, and will provide enough for your fleet whether its five vehicles or 5000 vehicles.

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Nitrogen Tire Inflation

Nitrogen tire inflation is a good way to add sustainability and energy management to your managed fleet.

Nitrogen in tires not only does well for the bottom line of a managed fleet, but it also helps with energy management and sustainability. If managed fleets want to add a hybrid tires or going green branding/spin to their company and its services, then nitrogen tire inflation can provide that benefit as well.

Nitrogen in tires can help a managed fleet go green in three ways: fuel efficiency, extended tire life, and carbon emission reduction. Carbon emission reduction comes from the improvement in fuel efficiency, while extended tire life means that each tire lasts longer, and fewer of them will end up in landfills. Obviously, the improvement in fuel efficiency in and of itself is good for the environment. The less fossil fuels used, the better.

Why should managed fleets care about energy management and sustainability? Is this something that customers and shareholders care about? Would this even be something that a company board of directors or a CEO will care about? Maybe for a managed fleet, going green for the sake of going green may not mean a whole lot. However, going green (especially with the practice of putting nitrogen in tires) can cut significant fuel and maintenance costs. That is something that customers, shareholders, a board of directors, and a CEO will all consider a good thing.

In fact, this type of energy management will not only cuts costs, but those cut costs mean additional funds for hiring more people, updating facilities, improving company infrastructure, or even lowering prices for your customers. All that sounds like win-win for everyone! To think all that can come from one simple change from air tire inflation to nitrogen tire inflation.

Nitrofleet99 is the only nitrogen tire inflation firm that’s dedicated to serving managed fleets with nitrogen tire inflation services and equipment. For pricing on nitrogen products and services, please contact us.

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managed fleets nitrogen tire inflation

Managed fleets can really benefit from nitrogen tire inflation.

Managed fleets come in all sizes, and are found in a variety of industries, but do have at least one thing in common: they use a lot of fuel.  With gas prices on the rise, keeping control of those costs can be difficult. However, increasing a vehicle’s fuel economy by just 1 mile per gallon can save a 300-vehicle fleet over $50,000 in one year. Fleet managers can easily reign in fuel costs for their fleets and their companies by improving fuel efficiency.

One of the best ways to improve fuel efficiency is with nitrogen tire inflation because nitrogen in tires makes it easier to achieve the most important factor to improving fuel efficiency and increasing tire life: proper tire pressure. By itself, proper tire pressure increases fuel efficiency between three and six percent. If the vehicle already gets 34 miles to the gallon, then a three percent increase in fuel efficiency will achieve that 1 mile per gallon increase that needed to see savings. If the vehicle gets 25 miles to the gallon, then a four percent increase is what needed to achieve that one mile per gallon. Since nitrogen tire inflation maintains proper tire pressure for a longer period of time, those savings are more easily achieved and kept.

According to the Tire Retread Bureau, the biggest issues affecting the bottom line of fleet managers, after fuel costs, are tire maintenance/safety and replacement/tire wear. Nitrogen tire inflation targets those issues as well as the fuel economy because proper tire pressure increases tire life as well as the fuel economy. This leads to even more savings for managed fleets, as they can not only cut fuels costs but cut tire maintenance and replacement costs as well. According to the Technology & Maintenance Council, 10 percent under inflation will shorten tread life anywhere between nine and 16 percent. Under inflation shortens tread life because driving on these tires causes sidewall flexing, which creates irregular tire wear and extra heat build-up within the tire, reducing retreadability and safety while using more energy and fuel. With an average tire press of $250, under inflation will cost a managed fleet an extra $25 per tire. Proper tire pressure with nitrogen tire inflation will reduce those maintenance costs while making the vehicles safer for your drivers.

Nitrogen tire inflation is a win-win for managed fleets both large and small, and in all sorts of industries. It’s been used by the airline industry, NASCAR, and the military for years, so nitrogen must be doing something right for them. If improving fuel economy or cutting operational costs are what you’re after as a fleet manager, then why not see if nitrogen tire inflation can do something right for your managed fleet?

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nitrogen in tiresA recent article in the Huffington Post showcased six myths about saving on gas. One of those myths was nitrogen tire inflation because the difference is negligible, and tires filled with air at proper tire pressure will achieve the same results. Prepare for this myth to be busted.

We grant that proper tire pressure is what it takes to achieve greater fuel efficiency, but the way the myth is presented in the Huffington Post article presumes that regular air and nitrogen gas react the same way in consumer tires and in the tires of managed fleet vehicles. The only times the two react differently is in commercial aircraft and high-performance race cars, since they undergo much more extreme temperature changes than a typical four-door driver or long-haul driver.

However, regular air does react to even the less extreme temperate changes that take place as one drives to the store or across state lines. Why else would it be recommended to check tire pressure when the tires are cold? What would be the point of this recommendation if regular air didn’t react under normal driving circumstances? Well, regular does react under those circumstances, and when it is used, it warms up as the car is driven, increasing the tire pressure. Checking the tire pressure when the tires are warm could give a false reading of a tire pressure higher than what it actually is. This could cause someone to release tire pressure that’s needed, or not fill up when they really should.

Nitrogen gas maintains proper tire pressure better and for a longer period of time because it doesn’t react to temperature changes nearly as much as regular air. This reaction takes place in the tires you get from your local auto repair shop as well as the tires on race cars and commercial aircraft. Fuel efficiency increase three to five percent with properly inflated tires versus under-inflated tires. With gas prices going up, that kind of fuel efficiency is much more than “negligible” to some people.

True, some dealerships and auto repair shops may charge for nitrogen, but some do provide the service for free. Some sell brand new tires that are already filled with nitrogen. The core of this myth is busted, since the core argument was that commercial aircraft and high-performance vehicles need it to handle the extreme temperature changes. However, temperature changes still take place in regular driving, so it’s reasonable to conclude nitrogen can make a difference to consumers and to managed fleets as well.

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tire care tips for managed fleets

Sure, flat tires happen from time to time. But good tire care can prevent a tire disaster from happening.

It’s no secret that taking care of your tires will allow them to last longer. The same is true with most things in life. To keep your tires at their optimum,  make sure to check them monthly for tire wear, proper tire pressure, and any damage that would indicate that your tires would need to be replaced. Here are a few tire care tips to keep in mind this year in order to keep your tires, and your fleet, running at their best:

1. Consider the Load When Looking a Tire Pressure – Tire footprint and traction are reduced when van, pickup or RV tires are over inflated for the loads carried. In particular, tires with aggressive tread patterns may contribute to oversteer or “roadwalk” if inflated beyond the inflation pressure specified in the Owner’s Manual and vehicle placard for standard or customary loads. Over inflation also increases the chances of bruise damage. Higher inflation pressure increases stiffness which may deteriorate ride and generate unwanted vibration. If worried about over inflation when on the road, make sure to check the tire pressure when they are cool and not right after a drive.

2. Tire Care is Also a Safety Issue – Under inflation is the most common cause of failures in any kind of tire and may result in severe cracking, component separation or “blowout,” with unexpected loss of vehicle control and accident. Under inflation increases sidewall flexing and rolling resistance resulting in heat and mechanical damage. Also keep in mind that under inflation reduces a tire’s ability to support the vehicle’s load and transmit cornering, braking and acceleration forces, which could increase the chances of a flat tire or a tire blowout.

3. Check Tire Pressure Regularly – Although nitrogen tire inflation maintains proper tire pressure for a longer period of time, it is not meant to be a replacement for good tire care and regular maintenance. For managed fleets, tire pressure should be checked weekly, as under inflated tires not only increase safety risk, they also reduce your fuel efficiency and end up costing you money. There’s should be no substitution for safety.

With these three tips in mind, managed fleets should have an excellent 2012 with their vehicles.

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Nitrogen Tire Inflation

Pump your tires green with nitrogen tire inflation!

Managed fleets are part of the solution, NOT part of the problem in reducing fuel usage and carbon emissions on a very large scale. It’s simply about making a more efficient use of the resources we have, especially with our tires and what we put in them.

A study from the American Automotive Leasing Association found that in 2007, managed fleets saved over 400 million gallons of fuel. Given that the United States consumers about that much in a single day, this savings represents progress toward reducing our dependence on foreign oil. This study also found that a managed fleet results in a more efficient use of fuel and a reduction in carbon emissions because the managed fleet model is structures around efficiency.

Do you have a managed fleet business model, or you want to make your current fleet more efficient? Well, here’s one way: nitrogen tire inflation.

By putting nitrogen into your tires instead of air, or even just getting into the habit of topping off your tires with nitrogen, you make your tires hybrid in an instant. Over 300 million tires are disposed of annually. Nitrogen tire inflation can reduce this number by 30 percent if only more fleets and consumers embraced the practice.

Air also leaks from three to four times faster than nitrogen. So, you know those great strides managed fleets made in reducing carbon emissions and saving all that fuel? All that goes down the drain if your tires aren’t the proper pressure. These hybrid tires create savings in three ways: improved fuel efficiency, reduced carbon emissions, and extended tire life. To calculate your fleet’s savings with Nitrofleet99 Hybrid Tires, then use our carbon reduction calculator to figure out the exact savings!

At Nitrofleet99, we promote sustainable business with better use of our natural resources by providing nitrogen products and services that achieve environmental gains. Specifically, we offer a Carbon Credit Program for managed fleets.

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