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Sustainability Trucking Industry Video

How the Cost of Carbon Affects the Trucking Industry

managed fleets cost of carbon
Managed fleets like this one are also part of the cost of carbon.

Today marks the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, where over 150 people died as a result of the storm and it’s aftermath. On the one hand, this is a tragic event and it was unfortunate that it happened. On the other hand, Hurricane Sandy was just the most recent in a series of natural disasters. Fourteen months prior to Hurricane Sandy, Tropical Storm Irene hit the Northeast causing $15 billion dollars in damages. Sandy was also more devastating, as these superstorm statistics reveal:

  • $65 billion in damages and economic losses.
  • 200,000 small business closures from damage or power outages.
  • 2 million working days lost.
  • 8 flooded tunnels in New York
  • 25 percent of cell sites out of service in 10 states.
  • Estimates of total damage to the entire transit, road and bridge system in New Jersey reached $2.9 billion.
  • New York’s transportation infrastructure, minus the subway system, suffered an estimated $2.5 billion in damage.

The Cost of Carbon

These costs of Superstorm Sandy affected more than just those that lived on the East Cost and those that did business on the Eastern Seaboard. It affected entire industries like the trucking industry who also have a vested interest in the area’s recovery and who can’t be at its best because of problems such as the working days lost and the lack of cell phone service. The cost of carbon is much more than bigger natural disasters and changing climates. It also includes a shift in our livelihoods and our way of life. Trucking is very much a part of that, and trucking can be part of the problem, or it can be part of the solution.

One Year Later

It’s been one year since the disaster, and thousands are still without a home and still without government aid or insurance money to rebuild. The industry is already making improvements, as U.S carbon emissions are at their lowest since 1994, but the time for action is now. This is action from everyone in the transportation community, and not just a few managed fleets or forward-thinking companies. The costs of carbon, of inaction, and of the climate change are already hitting the United States and aren’t going to stop. Below is a video illustrating more of these costs and the action that it will take to make a change:

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Fuel Efficiency Sustainability Video

Fuel Economy: There’s More at Play than Just Engine Size

VW L1
Photo by RudolfSimon via Wikimedia Commons

Size matters, but not as much as you think. When it comes to fuel-efficient cars, the best ones have a combination of good aerodynamics, lightweight, low drive line, and a small or medium-size engine.

Eco-friendly cars are the way of the future. More vehicle, parts, and tire manufacturers are coming up with new and creative ways to offer consumers the best fuel-efficient and environmentally-sound cars. Not only do these eco-vehicles save on gas and energy, they do their part for environmental carbon reduction. FuelEconomy.gov reports 1.6 billion metric tons of greenhouse gases are emitted into the atmosphere by highway vehicles each year. That’s 20 pounds of carbon dioxide per gallon of gas. Drivers who choose hybrid and electric vehicles greatly reduce the amount of carbon emissions entering the atmosphere which helps slow climate change.

Motorists may not be able to get their hands on the VW XL1 quite yet, but can still make savvy decisions to wring the best mileage from vehicles fitting the following criteria.

VW claims the XL1 is the most fuel efficient car ever with an estimated 261 mpg.

Vehicle Aerodynamics

Optimal fuel economy requires a vehicle that is aerodynamic. Aerodynamic designs look sleek and can improve fuel efficiency by one mile per gallon, when compared to vehicles that do not move through the air as easily.

The visual profile of a vehicle can help determine whether it is aerodynamic or not. Although some exceptions exist, a boxy shape is usually less aerodynamic than vehicles with a slight curve. Look for cars that curve along the top and back. Avoid vehicles with a clear box-type shape, which will require more effort to move forward.

Use vehicles lower to the ground. Cars with less air flowing below will not be slowed down or fight against wind on the top and bottom of the vehicle.

Vehicle Weight

The weight of the vehicle plays a significant role in fuel efficiency. As a general rule, a heavier car or truck will have a lower mile per gallon, on average, than a lighter vehicle. Tirebuyer.com advises against purchasing a heavy vehicle, like a van or truck, unless it is necessary for your job, family or terrain. It is more fuel efficient to select a Sedan, compact vehicle or Coupe.

Select a vehicle that has a lower weight, if possible. Even if you need a larger vehicle, look at the weight of the vehicle and compare it. An extra 100 pounds in your vehicle will cause your fuel efficiency to drop by roughly two percent. Pay attention to the weight of the vehicle when you are making a selection to get better gas mileage within the specific class of vehicles.

Even the type of tires you buy can affect the weight and fuel efficiency of your vehicle. Under-inflated tires can make your car work harder and use more gas. Nitrogen-inflated tires lose air four times slower than air-inflated tires that also contain oxygen and water. Inflating your tires with nitrogen is also safer and improves tire wear and rim life.

Select a Vehicle With Low Drive Line Weight

Drive line weight is the weight of moving components within your vehicle. Whether you currently own a vehicle or want to buy a new car, changing out the axles, flywheel, crank shaft and other moving parts for lighter options will reduce your fuel expenses.

Stopping and Starting

Even if you select a vehicle that is designed to have better mileage, your actions behind the wheel will impact your fuel efficiency. The law of inertia states that objects in motion will continue moving until an external force causes it to stop. In the case of a vehicle, applying the brakes will cause it to stop. Unfortunately, if you are constantly stopping and then forcing the car into motion again, it will make your fuel efficiency drop.

The U.S. Department of Energy suggests that aggressive driving will actually reduce your fuel economy by roughly 33 percent. Drive at the speed limit to reduce the impact on your fuel.

Engine size and the amount of horsepower within a vehicle are only one factor that impacts your gas mileage. Before you buy a new car, take the weight of the vehicle and the aerodynamic design into account.

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Fuel Efficiency Nitrogen Tire Inflation Video

Nitrogen in Your Tires Part 2 [Video]

Below is part two of the nitrogen in your tires video series. You can catch part one here, although you don’t need to watch part one in order to understand part two. Enjoy!

Well, those prices are taking a hit on many people’s pocketbooks but there are ways to save a little moneyAnd it doesn’t involve buying a new car. Heidi Glaus joins us with more. Heidi –
Glaus: Well, yeah, with prices the way they are these days everyone is looking for the smallest thing to cut back on. Ken Lawton from Go Nitro Tire might have the solution. So, what are the benefits of filling your tires with nitrogen?
Lawton: Well, Heidi, the first and most important benefit is safety. Maintenance, fuel economy, and longer tire wear; these represent the core of benefits for nitrogen-inflated tires.
Glaus: So, this is the kind of machine we’re going to be looking at. But, unlike now when we pull up to a gas station, you can’t just put in a quarter, 50 cents, and fill up your tires. This is going to take somebody special.
Lawton: It’s going to take a technician. Typically, for a conventional car, it takes six to 10 minutes for all four tires simultaneously to be done
Glaus: And, that’ll cost a consumer how much?
Lawton: At a tire store or an automotive group, it’ll cost anywhere from $24.95 to $49.95.
Glaus: And, you were saying that these aren’t really everywhere yet?
Lawton: No, they’re not. There’s just under 500 nitrogen service providers here in the United States. That number is changing and growing rapidly but it’s still a small number for the size of the population.
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Fuel Efficiency Nitrogen Tire Inflation Video

Nitrogen in Your Tires Part 1 [Video]

One of the ways we that we come up with blog post ideas is that we look at competing blogs to find topic ideas that we haven’t yet covered. By simply taking a title, topic, or keyword, we then write our own nitrogen tire inflation article with our own perspective and information. It was through this routine process the other day that we came across a video of… ourselves.

While looking through the competitor’s blog, we found a post that had a video in it. We noticed that in the video screenshot was a man that looked a lot like Ken Lawton, the CEO of Nitrofleet99. Curious, we watched the video. Sure enough, it was Ken! Not only did this competitor post a video that showcased his competitor very clearly (the video introduces Ken and shoots a few seconds of Nitrofleet99’s banner) , the video was an interview with Ken about nitrogen tire inflation. The competitor was never featured in the two and half-minute piece! We found it interesting that our competitor shared a video about nitrogen tire inflation, but failed to consider the his direct competitor was the one prominently featured as the source and expert on the issue. He focused too much on the fact that the video was about nitrogen tire inflation.

We couldn’t not share this video and this story! The video (which is part one of two, another fact the competitor failed to notice) and its transcript are below. We will share part two and its transcript next week.

Transcript

But, with the average price of gas in St. Louis at $3.87 a gallon this morning, filling up your tank is not something to be taken lightly these days. But, there are ways to save a little money at the pump and Heidi Glaus is here to share the secrets. Heidi-

Glaus: Yeah, well there’s a lot to know about filling your tires and what that can do for your gas mileage. So, this is Ken Lawton and you’re all about the nitrogen, which is some people have probably heard about but maybe they don’t know exactly what filling your tires with nitrogen can do.

Lawton: Heidi, nitrogen tire inflation has been around for a very long time. The military, the NASCAR community, and big business has been using nitrogen for over twenty years.

Glaus: So, what you’re saying is that it hasn’t really been affordable to the common person for the last few years?

Lawton: It is completely been unaffordable due to the technology changes; in recent years have made it affordable to automotive groups and tire stores and the public in general. So, it is come of age.

Glaus: So what are we talking; what are the benefits of using nitrogen instead of, you know, oxygen?

Lawton: Well, it begins with aging. The oxygen in air degredates tires and causes premature aging. The tire of simply wears out more quickly. With nitrogen, what you have is the benefit of a completely dry, inert air that simply makes the tire perform as a hybrid. What you’re doing by converting to nitrogen is creating a hybrid tire.

Glaus: Really! So, we hear all about the hybrid cars and all of that and this is just what we’re doing to the tires. So, how much can somebody save on gas mileage by filling a tire with nitrogen?

Lawton: Well, various studies have been done by Ford Motors, Exxon Mobil has done studies as well. What we’re finding is savings up to ten percent on fuel and extended tire wear by up to 30 percent. This is significant information for consumers.

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Nitrogen Tire Inflation Video

Jay Leno Supports Nitrogen Tire Inflation

Comedian Jay Leno has been known for his love of cars, as well as his great jokes. Leno has one of the largest car collections around, so naturally he would know a thing or two about taking good care of them.

In this video, Leno discusses the benefits of nitrogen tire inflation. If you don’t trust what the industry is telling you, maybe you’ll trust a familiar face like Leno’s.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUZGXmWMKXM&version=3&hl=en_US&rel=0]

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Nitrogen Tire Inflation Video

Video: Nitrogen in Motorcycles

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RaGoe1j5RyQ&w=425&h=349]

The benefits of inflating your tires with nitrogen have been documented, and the practice is already in use by NASCAR, the airline industry, and the military. But, can motorcycle riders see the same benefits of nitrogen tire inflation as these big industries?

The answer is “Yes!” We at Nitrofleet99 recommend the use of nitrogen for all tires, including motorcycles, due to its benefits of extended tire life, better pressure retention, and thus improved fuel economy and more reliable handling. Tires should be filled with nitrogen to the same pressure that is recommended by the manufacturer for air. Watch the video to learn more.

With the summer travel season in full swing, it’s also recommended that motorcycle riders take extra safety precautions by having an inspection of their vehicle. This inspection should include checking the tire pressure and the tire conditions. At the inspection is the best time to try nitrogen tire inflation, topping off those tires to make them safer for the summer rides ahead.

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Fuel Efficiency Nitrogen Tire Inflation Video

How Nitrogen Tire Inflation Can Save You Gas Money [Video]

The current national average for gas prices is $3.83 per gallon. That’s three cents up from last week, and 30 cents higher than a month ago. It may be time to make a gas buddy by taking a few moments only to find the cheapest gas in your area. Or simply drive less and ride your bike, or walk more. There are plenty of ways to save money on gas, so if you haven’t started thinking of ways to save yet, now would be the time to start.

Now, one way to save gas money is to make our vehicles more efficient. I don’t mean turning them into hybrids. I mean simply maintaining your vehicle, or doing a few small things just a little bit differently. So, what can be done to make your car more of a penny saver instead of a penny pincher?

An informal study from Carnegie Mellon University found that the average person who drives 12,000 miles yearly on under-inflated tires uses about 144 extra gallons of gas, at a cost of $300-$500 a year. Keeping those tires properly inflated would save a few hundred dollars, which the average consumer could easily use in today’s economy. A better way to keep tires properly inflated longer is with nitrogen tire inflation. Keep in mind that regularly inflating your tire with nitrogen doesn’t replace the importance of checking your tire pressure regularly.

Inflating your tire with nitrogen also increases the life of your tire and your car. Nitrogen is a dry, non-corrosive gas and will reduce oxidation and rust due to the absence of oxygen and moisture. This will help minimize wheel corrosion to promote better bead sealing. Nitrogen tire inflation has routinely been used by airlines and racing vehicles, but the practice could prove beneficial for drivers who drive infrequently (car collectors, track drivers, snow tire users, motor home owners, etc).

The best thing about nitrogen tire inflation is that you don’t need to remove the air from you tires to make the switch. Why wait for your tires to lose pressure and risk something happening, when you can start saving money today?

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