Westport makes environmental inroads with Wal-Mart

VANCOUVER — Westport Innovations has partnered with Wal-Mart to introduce four liquefied natural gas (LNG) fuelled Peterbilt 386 trucks into service for the department store’s fleet.

The trucks will operate at Wal-Mart’s distribution center in Apple Valley, Calif.

Wal-Mart, which operates one of the nation’s largest private fleets, revealed its “Sustainability 360” program in 2007, which promotes a holistic approach to integrating sustainability throughout its business.

The objective of this particular partnership is to demonstrate the efficiency and significant emission reduction benefits of Westport LNG fuel systems in heavy-duty trucks. The four trucks in this proposal will be used in Wal-Mart’s over-the-road goods distribution operations.

“Wal-Mart is careful to consider the civic and environmental impact its operations have in the communities it serves around the world,” stated Tim Yatsko, senior vice-president of transportation at Wal-Mart. “We are continually looking for new, innovative ways to reduce the emissions of our fleet.”

Environmental funding has allowed B.C.-based Westport Innovations
to achieve success with its LNG-fuelled truck south
of the border.

The project also aims to demonstrate the effectiveness of Westport’s commercially available technology.

Westport’s LNG system for heavy-duty Class 8 trucks is based on the Cummins
ISX diesel engine with cooled EGR. The LNG version of the engine offers the same horsepower, torque and efficiency as the base diesel engine rating it is replacing.

“Our experience shows that by using natural gas, Westport’s LNG fuel system can help Wal-Mart reduce their fleet vehicles’ greenhouse gas emissions by some 20 percent and NOx emissions by between 30 and 50 percent over their diesel equivalents,” said Michael Gallagher, president and COO of Westport. “This represents a significant milestone for Westport as we have been actively pursuing large private and commercial truck fleets.”

The Westport LNG system comprises LNG fuel tanks, proprietary Westport fuel injectors, cryogenic fuel pumps and associated electronic components to facilitate robust performance and reliable operation. The Westport LNG system is 2008 EPA and CARB certified.

The system’s certification has played well in the company’s effort to supply U.S. ports with alternatively powered vehicles. Recently, the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach approved a new $1.6 billion Clean Truck Superfund. The fund will assist replacing many of the 16,800 Class 8 trucks serving the ports with LNG-powered vehicles. The ports have also introduced a new progressive ban that will remove all pre-2007 trucks by 2012.

Westport’s LNG fuel system is the only alternative fuel technology currently qualified for financial support under the ports’ Clean Truck program.

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