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Sept.7, 2015

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COMMENTARY 46 THE JOURNAL OF COMMERCE SEPTEMBER 7.2015 ON THE PUTTING green, the golfer who putts last has the advantage of watching his predecessor "show him the line." There is valuable information to be gleaned if his attention is focused on the details. For instance, he can determine many uncontrollable factors such as the speed, slope and character- istics of the green that influences the ball. He must have knowledge of these details to determine the ball's path and the power of his stroke once he is over the ball. On June 19, Transportation Sec- retary Anthony R. Foxx, and Gina McCarthy, administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, sig ned the 629-page proposed Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards (Phase 2 of the Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines and Vehicles Truck Initia- tive) for publication in the Federal Register. It establishes a compre- hensive technolog y-adva ncing program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fuel consumption for new heavy-duty over-the-road vehicles that will pick up where Phase 1 left off and extend the stan- dards through the 2027 model year. Much like the golfer who has the benefit of watching his predeces- sor, it's advantageous to have those before you "show you the line" on GHG Phase 2. Transportation man- agers can learn valuable strategies from the early technology adopters who embraced GHG Phase 1. According to the North Ameri- can Council on Freight Efficiency, motor ca r r ier f leet s t hat pa r- ticipated in its 2015 Annual Fleet Fuel Study are saving $9,000 per vehicle per year in fuel expenses by incorporating existing technol- ogies. This represents an increase in savings from $4,400 per vehi- cle per year in 2011. Those on the vang uards are establishing best practices using these technolo- gies and are reducing their GHG emissions in direct proportion to the adopted technologies. Likewise, fleets are increasing fuel efficiency in direct proportion to their GHG emissions reduction. The data from millions of miles logged in Class 8 tractor fuel studies calculate the compound annual growth rate in truck fuel efficiency of approximately 2.5 percent since model year 2010, which preceded GHG Phase 1. The CAGR remains constant when the calculation is applied to model years 2014-16 as well as to model years 2014 through the 2027 tractor mandates in Phase 2. This is good news for trans- portation f leets, especially when you consider the original equipment manufacturers are consistently exceeding the Phase 1 mandates and are expected to continue to do so through Phase 2. The technologies associated with the efficiency gains are ingenious and numerous and are placing the industry on the precipice of excit - ing and transformational change. Seldom does a mandate benefit all stakeholders, and even more seldom does it address all three legs of the sustainability stool. The social benefits are obvious considering the reduction of emis- sions results in dramatic savings in health care costs, and although cli- mate change is a subject of debate, most people believe reducing car- bon dioxide levels will reduce global warming. Equally advantageous are the program's monetary benefits to transportation fleets, reducing the total cost of operations and allowing a rapid return on investment. To take full advantage of the benefits in Phase 2, fleet managers must be equipped with the knowl- edge of their predecessors and be able to calculate each truck's tip- ping point — the point in time when the savings in fuel and maintenance costs make it cheaper to acquire a new truck, rather than continue to run the old one. Aside from the driver, the cost of fuel is the single largest expense of operating a f leet, and the new mandates will help deliver consid- erable fuel savings. When it comes to Phase 2, don't end up in a bunker. Get a grip on your expenses and ace it! JOC Fran Flynn is vice president of sustainability, marketing and community relations at Fleet Advantage, a Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based data analytics company. Contact her at EMITTING LESS, SAVING MORE Motor carrier fleets that participated in a recent study are saving $9,000 per vehicle per year in fuel expenses by incorporating existing technologies. By Fran Flynn

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