Compressed natural gas use in garbage trucks

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The White Paper is developed by WIH Resource Group (WIH) and was created from industry research and analysis of the current use of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) in refuse (municipal solid waste – MSW) collection vehicles by both public sector agencies and private sector service providers throughout the United States.

The waste management industry’s interest in this information is to assess the potential for utilizing CNG fueled refuse collection vehicles in their own organizations or subcontracted solid waste and recycling collection vehicles and operations.

The surveys and interviews conducted by WIH’s Staff with various cities and other private sector companies that currently utilize and operate CNG fleets, centered on securing industry experience, data and knowledge on the following key items of interest to the waste management industry, both
public and private sectors:

  • CNG Engine reliability;
  • Optimal CNG engine type (manufacturer)
  • Average age of CNG fueled fleets & life expectancy of CNG fueled fleets;
  • Average R&M and operational costs of CNG fueled fleets;
  • Determination of the overall reliability of CNG fueling systems;
  • Assessment of the legal payload impacts, i.e. contrasting standard diesel collection vehicle payloads to that of CNG fueled trucks (CNG fueled vehicles have heavier tare weights due to the need for larger fuel tanks), including transportation routing cost impacts to and from disposal sites;
  • Review of the available grant funding from the State, EPA and Federal agencies to assist in capital costs of fleet acquisition and ongoing operating costs;
  • Assessment of the effects of CNG fuels and fueling in cold winter climates and elevation changes which require full trucks to transport up inclines

Summary of Table of Contents

The White Paper is organized into five sections, plus Appendices. The sections of the White Paper are
listed below.

  • Section 1 – Introduction and Project Approach
  • Section 2 – Refuse Collection Vehicles
  • Section 3 – Industry Research and Interviews
  • Section 4 – Natural Gas and Compressed Natural Gas
  • Section 5 - Evaluation of Key Issues and Recommendations
  • Appendices

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