With the 2016 presidential election behind us, we’re reminded of the importance of investing wisely in our collective future. For fleet managers, in particular, this means understanding that the actions taken today regarding fuel usage will affect future generations of Americans.
It seems only appropriate at the start of a new chapter in our nation’s history to embrace our active role in both the health of our environment and our economy with fuel made in the U.S. This is why it’s important to have the right tools and resources to make an informed decision when it comes to transitioning fleet vehicles from gasoline and diesel to alternatively fueled vehicles, like propane autogas-powered models.
One helpful source when considering making the switch from diesel to propane-powered vehicles is the Energy Information Administration Energy Outlook for 2017. The recent short-term energy outlook for 2017 predicts the average price for diesel will increase from $2.31 to $2.69 — a significant increase that makes the task of budgeting even more difficult.
Another source is ICF International’s 2016 Propane Market Outlook, which forecasts through 2025 that total propane vehicle sales will quadruple based on 2014 sales. According to ICF, a continuing growth in domestic propane production, combined with a modest rebound in oil prices, is expected to ensure the continuation of a significant fuel cost advantage in markets where propane competes against diesel, particularly for vehicle fleets.
For example, Leander Independent School District in Texas pays only 75 cents per gallon for propane autogas compared to $1.50 per gallon for diesel. In addition to these cost savings, it is expected that these vehicles will also reduce annual nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions by over 31,000 pounds, and particulate matter (PM) by over 630 pounds, two pollutants that have been linked to serious health problems, such as aggravated asthma and lung damage.
As fleet managers continue to look toward the future of fuel system technology improvements, we encourage each one to remember that propane autogas is a nontoxic, non-carcinogenic and non-corrosive fuel classified by The Environmental Protection Agency as a non-contaminant. It’s also the leading alternative fuel in the United States and the third most commonly used vehicle fuel.
In addition to these environmental benefits, using alternative fuels in our vehicles, instead of relying on gasoline and diesel, would allow the U.S. to use a domestically produce energy — and reduce concerns about foreign sources of oil and geopolitical instability.
For more information on the environmental and economic benefits of propane autogas, or to learn more about ROUSH CleanTech’s deployments of alternative fuel systems, please visit www.roushcleantech.com.
Photo consideration: ROUSHCLEANTECH