In honor of National Drive Electric Week, September 10-18, we want to share one of our past articles from our Perspective . Shout-out thanks to Bruce Birdsell, our Fleet Manager, for always keeping us up to speed!

Being green, going the extra mile by Bruce Birdsell
You may have noticed some different types of vehicles sporting the MacDonald-Miller oval recently. In our effort to be greener through reduced emissions, along with reducing the cost of operation for our vehicles, we’ve added several different models to our fleet.

Here are some examples:
1 RAM C/V van that replaced a Toyota Tacoma. Mileage improved by 26%.
4 Toyota Camry and Ford Fusion hybrids getting an average of 37.64 mpg.
15 Toyota Priuses, primarily in BPG, getting an average of 43.60 mpg. Most of these replaced 
Toyota Tacomas for a mileage improvement of 142%.
5 Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrids getting an average of 160.80 mpg!

Some more things we’re doing include:
Adding more high speed EV chargers at the upper building to support the growing fleet of company as well as personal plug-in vehicles. Personal plug-ins include a couple of Chevrolet Volts, Nissan Leafs, and most recently, a Ford Fusion Energi was sighted charging up. Replacing gasoline Chevrolet Silverados in long-distance applications with RAM 1500 Ecodiesels. The anticipated mileage improvement is 71%. Conducting a year-long Mileage Improvement Challenge for individuals driving company vehicles to promote green-driving practices.

Just like working on a jobsite, in the fleet world there’s always a right tool for the job, and having that right tool can make all the difference. While a hybrid like a Prius makes sense for urban applications, they generally get lower mileage on road trips than in town. Plug-in hybrids are most efficient when they can be operated within their battery range. Diesels are the kings of highway efficiency, but don’t do as well in town as hybrids. Alternative fuels like compressed natural gas (CNG), liquefied natural gas (LNG) and hydrogen are great options in areas where a fuel delivery infrastructure is present as well as for vehicles that return to a central location each night like garbage trucks. Unfortunately that delivery infrastructure is sorely lacking in the Pacific Northwest, but when availability improves we’ll certainly consider those fuel options as well.

At the top it started with Gus Simonds getting a Chevrolet Volt – a travel wonder that can go thousands of miles without refueling – though he’s not the only one driving a greener vehicle these days. Several of our leaders have opted for more efficient vehicles when replacing aging ones. Mark Webster improved his mileage by 11%, Stephanie Gebhardt by 65%, and Steve Nicholes by a whopping 73%, just by opting for more efficient vehicles. Even your humble Fleet Manager, while most of his counterparts drive company vehicles to and from work, rides his bicycle nearly 40 miles round trip each day, rain or (on occasion) shine!

Categories: General

We make buildings work better.