UPS plans to invest $100 million in its alternative fuel and advanced technology fleet, adding 12 new compressed natural gas fueling stations and 380 CNG trucks, the company announced.
By investing heavily in its own CNG infrastructure, the company is planning for the long term instead of around near-term fuel pricing fluctuations, according to UPS. The company is working to meet its goal of logging 1 billion miles with its alternative fuel and advanced technology fleet by the end of 2017.
Part of its strategy for meeting that goal is a testing approach that UPS calls a Rolling Laboratory. The company tests and deploys a variety of vehicle types based on the terrain and delivery conditions at each location. The approach allows UPS to determine the right alternative fuel solutions meet the needs of route-specific driving environments.
UPS’s fleet in the U.S. includes more than 6,840 all-electric, hybrid electric, hydraulic electric, CNG, LNG, propane and light-weight composite body vehicles.
“CNG is part of a broad investment in a variety of alternative fuel vehicles,” said Mark Wallace, UPS senior vice president of global engineering and sustainability. “Taken together, all of our alternative fuel vehicles represent 6% of the more than 100,000 UPS global fleet, and have driven a 10% annual reduction in use of conventional fuel.”
The new CNG trucks will be manufactured by Kenworth with Agility and Quantum Fuel Systems providing the CNG storage systems. The 12 new CNG stations will be built by TruStar Energy in Amarillo, Texas; Chattanooga, Tenn.; Columbia, S.C.; El Paso, Texas; Fort Worth, Texas; Kansas City, Kan.; Phoenix, Ariz.; Reno, Nev.; San Antonio, Texas; Tifton, Ga.; Trinidad, Colo., and Willow Grove, Pa.
This investment builds on the company’s existing 18 CNG fueling stations in Alabama, California, Colorado, Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia. UPS also operates CNG vehicles in Germany, the Netherlands, and Thailand.