Fleet Briefing: Nissan, GE, Range Rover, InterContinental

by | May 27, 2011

London has launched a network of electric vehicle charge points that it plans to grow to 1,300 strong by the end of 2013. Drivers can access the charge points with a swipe card, Business Green reports. The project, dubbed Source London, is led by a consortium that includes Siemens, Scottish and Southern Energy, and government agency Transport for London.

The InterContinental San Francisco is using a Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid through a partnership with car-sharing service Zipcar and City Park, and the hotel now has its own charging station, GreenBiz reports.

UPS has installed a biodiesel fuel tank and fueling station at its Worldport facility in Louisville, Ky., the most important hub in the company’s global operations. The equipment will allow fueling operators to blend various percentages of biodiesel, starting with five percent and working up to 20 percent. The biodiesel tank and station at Worldport fuels nearly 200 vehicles and diesel equipment, most of which help load packages on and off the planes, UPS said.

“For a giant like UPS to use biodiesel is not only an outstanding vote of confidence for biodiesel, but an example of how America’s first advanced biofuel will fuel the drive towards genuine corporate sustainability,” said Joe Jobe, CEO of the National Biodiesel Board.

Nissan North America has begun installation of 30 solar-assisted charging stations (pictured) at the Smyrna Vehicle Assembly Plant and the Nissan Americas headquarters in Franklin, Tenn.

The solar chargers, which will be operational for use by employees and visitors by July 1, are designed to charge the all-electric Nissan Leaf. The manufacturer will build the Leaf and its batteries at Smyrna, which is expected to begin operations late next year. Tennessee will be a key launch market for the Leaf, Nissan says.

GE Capital Fleet Services has launched an interactive eco website dedicated to alternative vehicles and services. The website provides information and tools to help companies with greening their vehicle fleets. There are dedicated sections on Business Solutions and Driver Solutions, to educate fleet managers and drivers about alternative vehicles and environmental performance.

Range Rover says the use of innovative plastics has helped to cut the weight and CO2 emissions of its newest vehicle. By using plastic resins by Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) in instrument panels, spoilers and other parts, Range Rover says it was able to reduce the weight of the Evoque by 35 percent compared to the 2010 Range Rover Sport model.

The Evoque is the lightest Range Rover ever, at less than 1,600 kg, and includes front fenders partially made of recycled PET water bottles. But its CO2 emissions of just under 130g/km are still higher than the European Union’s target of 120g/km for new passenger vehicles, starting in 2012, Sustainable Life Media reports.

Waste Management of Illinois has opened a compressed natural gas filling station for use with garbage and recycling trucks. The new facility is equipped with 40 filling bays. The company currently operates six CNG-powered vehicles in the Chicago area, is awaiting the delivery of ten more this summer, and plans further purchases.

Finally, GE has opened a solar carport in Plainville, Conn. It will use GE smart EV charging technology to charge up to 13 electric vehicles per day via six charging stations, and deliver 125 MWh per year, with a lifespan of over 25 years, GE says. The company installed the carport together with national solar distributor Inovateus Solar LLC.

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