for the company's efforts to reduce transportation-related greenhouse gas emissions.
AEP operates flex-fuel vehicles, hybrid trucks and hybrid cars, including three plug-in hybrid electric vehicles that the company is testing to measure performance and determine how they impact the electric system. The company is testing new tires that reduce truck weight and tire heat buildup and has purchased 800,000 gallons of biodiesel fuel since 2005 and uses an alternative fuel blend instead of regular gasoline at company-owned fueling stations.
Through its corporate sustainability program, AEP has launched initiatives to reduce fuel consumption and emissions from its vehicle fleet. These activities will be part of the three-year action plan that the company implements as part of the SmartWay program.
AEP also has assessed the percentage of freight it ships via SmartWay carriers and measured the greenhouse gas emissions of those freight operations. The company has committed to ship at least 50 percent of its freight, excluding fuel for its power plants, with SmartWay Transport partner carriers.
While the shipment of power plant fuel was not part of the assessment AEP performed for the SmartWay program, more than 90 percent of the fuel they ship by rail is sent via SmartWay carriers. SmartWay is not currently designed to measure barge transportation emissions, which is the mode of shipment for 28 percent of AEP's fuel.
In December 2007, AEP began using SmartWay Partnership status as a component in evaluating and awarding shipping contracts. The company managed the shipment of an estimated 86 million pounds of material over 49 million miles during 2008, excluding power plant fuel.