CTA applauds Canada-U.S. freight partnership to save fuel, reduce air pollutants

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OTTAWA, Ont. — A signing ceremony was held last week in Detroit to announce an agreement between Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to partner on two of their key, respective programs aimed at improving fuel efficiency and reducing emissions in the trucking industry. The two organizations have unique but complementary approaches. NRCan’s FleetSmart program is an educational and training-based initiative that focuses on fuel-efficient driver behaviour. EPA’s SmartWay Transport Partnership emphasizes the use of innovative technology and shipper involvement.

The announcement was welcomed by the Canadian Trucking Alliance, which has long encouraged more cooperation between the federal governments of both countries when it comes to fuel efficiency and air quality initiatives.

“Many of our members have received benefit from FleetSmart, but we also encouraged our members to become involved in SmartWay because of the involvement of shippers and a number have,” said CTA CEO David Bradley. “Now we will have the best of both approaches.”

Under SmartWay, IKEA became designated as a “Green” shipper in 2004 when it rolled out a four-step plan that will increasingly see the company tender freight only to carriers who meet certain environmental criteria.

More than 10 per cent of SmartWay carrier participants are already CTA members with Canada-based operations, thanks to CTA’s promotional efforts.

NRCan and the EPA will initially coordinate numerous cross-border emissions projects, including engine-idling reduction from trucks crossing the Canada-U.S. border, joint clean-technology promotions and demonstrations, and truck driver training and awareness programs. Additional information on the FleetSmart Program is available at http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/transportation/fleetsmart.cfm and on the SmartWay Transport Partnership at http://www.epa.gov/smartway.

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