Solid waste specialist Republic Services is investing $25 million to expand and improve its fleet of compressed natural gas-powered trucks for use around the St. Louis area, reports the St. Louis Business Journal.
Of the $25 million, $22 million will be spent on 72 new CNG-powered collection vehicles, the web site reports. The remaining $3 million will be used to improve infrastructure, such as fueling stations and other operational needs.
The new trucks will replace the company’s existing diesel-powered fleet. The CNG trucks will be 90 percent quieter and produce 23 percent fewer carbon emissions than the trucks they are replacing. Republic Services’ area president Tim Trost said that the long-term environmental and economic benefits will justify the company’s up-front investment in CNG.
This announcement takes the company’s investment in the St. Louis area to around $45 million this year, according to the St. Louis Business Journal. In May, the company announced plans to pump $19 million into two recycling centers in the area, effectively tripling its waste-handling capacity in the area.
Republic Services recently pledged to make nearly 70 percent of its 2012 vehicle purchases natural gas vehicles, according to NGT News. By the end of 2015 the company should have over 3,000 trucks nationwide running on alternative fuels.
In May, Waste Management announced plans to add 35 CNG vehicles to its Houston fleet by the end of 2012, and said it would open its CNG fueling station in Conroe, Texas to consumers. In August, WM launched a Louisville fleet of 25 CNG trucks — the first of its kind in Kentucky — and unveiled Louisville’s first public-access, 24-hour CNG fueling station.
Earlier this month the company opened a CNG fueling station at its Canal Winchester operations, part of a $13.5 million investment in its Central Ohio fleet. Waste Management spent $3.8 million on the fueling station, and $9.75 million on 30 CNG trucks, half of which are in operation. The rest will be operating by the end of 2012.