Like a lot of you out there, I'm becoming more concerned about global warming. Now it's now all bad. In less than two decades, they predict we'll be having warm Georgia winters up here in chilly Ohio where I berth and I'm all for that. But with the polar ice sheets melting, we could also be getting an influx of hungry polar bears foraging for food. I'm not sure that's a good trade off. I recycle, switched to those corkscrew light bulbs (even if they are a little dim), put a low-flow nozzle on the shower and a brick in the toilet tank; but if scientists are to be believed, it's not going to be enough. Sure, things probably aren't going to reach critical mass in my lifetime, but I've got a new grandson and I'd like to leave him and his children a nice place to grow up.
In conjunction with the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the American Trucking Associations (ATA) sponsors the SmartWay Transport Partnership, an industry effort to reduce emissions and fuel consumption by long-haul trucks. Begun in 2004, the voluntary program is responsible for significant reductions in air pollution and greenhouse gases by the trucking industry. In 2007, the EPA presented ATA with an Environmental Excellence Award for its efforts in promoting the SmartWay program. Among the individual carriers similarly honored were Contract Freighters, Knight Transportation, Langford, Meijer, Roehl Transport, Schneider National, Swift Transportation and Wal-Mart.
SmartWay strives to decrease carbon emissions in the air by reducing idling and promoting energy conservation technologies for heavy-duty, on-road diesel trucks. An idling truck consumes about 1 gallon of fuel per hour. While some idling is necessary since trucks generally serve as both a driver's workplace and residence, unnecessary idling gobbled up 1.1 billion gallons of diesel last year alone. SmartWay identifies practical, money-saving techniques that can increase fuel efficiency, reduce idling, cut emissions and improve a fleet's bottom line. This truly is a win-win situation. Click here for more information on joining the voluntary SmartWay program.