Meijer Deploying First Fleet of Trucks with Near-Zero Emissions

Meijer yesterday began taking delivery of the nation’s first fleet of U.S. EPA 2010 trucks from Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) that features near-zero emissions technology.

In total, Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Meijer, an EPA SmartWay award-winning retailer, has purchased 75 Freightliner Cascadia trucks equipped with DD13 engines that represent a family of new fuel efficient, reduced-emission engines developed by Detroit Diesel in collaboration with the Department of Energy 21st Century Truck Partnership Program.

Meijer’s new fleet of Freightliner trucks will dramatically improve fuel efficiency while reducing emissions to near-zero levels of NOx (nitrogen oxides). With the delivery of the near-zero emissions trucks, Meijer will operate the largest 2010 EPA emission-compliant fleet in North America.

“We’re the first company in the nation to place an order and take delivery for these 21st-century trucks equipped with the BlueTec emissions technology,” said Dave Hoover, director of logistics at Meijer. “These trucks speak to our commitment to reducing our carbon footprint in so many different areas of our business. It’s also [rewarding] to be partnering with a neighboring Michigan-based company to help stimulate the economy and provide jobs right in our own backyard.”

With the introduction of these trucks, Meijer expects to see a 47 percent reduction in particulate matter, a 55 percent reduction in nitrous oxide and a 3 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions. The Cascadia fleet will reduce CO2 emissions by 9,300 U.S. tons, while virtually eliminating 525 U.S. tons of smog-creating NOx from the air.

The fleet order is one of several initiatives Meijer has launched to reduce its impact on the environment. The company recently opened the nation’s first LEED-certified remodel of an existing supercenter, and has moved forward with wind turbines on several of its buildings.

“We consider our green initiatives an integral part of our business plan,” said Hank Meijer, co-chairman and CEO of Meijer. “We’ve always had a philosophy that to be a good company, we must be a good neighbor. I can think of few better ways to be a good neighbor than focusing on efforts to be as green as possible.”

Meijer’s new Freightliner engines are designed with BlueTec emissions technology for EPA 2010 standards. The trucks are expected to deliver increased fuel economy of up to 5 percent. The trucks also mark an evolution of the selective catalytic reduction (SCR) technology developed by Daimler, which is used today by more than 200,000 trucks in Europe and Japan.

SCR is an emissions technology that treats NOx emissions downstream in the exhaust so that the engine can be tuned to run more efficiently and economically. SCR technology consists of an after-treatment catalyst system that allows engine exhaust to be treated with a non-hazardous fluid known as diesel exhaust fluid (DEF), which reduces harmful NOx into simple nitrogen and water.

Meijer operates 191 stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky.
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