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Garbage Truck Powered by Clean-Burning Natural Gas Handles Trash Collection Duties at Live Earth NY

One very special participant in the July 7 Live Earth New York Concert at the Meadowlands Sports Complex will dramatically demonstrate an excellent way to fight climate change. Powered by clean-burning, environmentally-friendly compressed natural gas (CNG) fuel, an Interstate Waste Services Co., Inc. demonstration truck will handle trash collection duties at the event.

"Putting trucks like these into operation in the New York area and all across the country is one of the best strategies available today for reducing air pollution and cutting greenhouse gases," said Joanna Underwood, President of Energy Vision, a national environmental organization. "I might say that this refuse truck is the rock star of the refuse industry!" she said.

The Live Earth Concert demonstration vehicle, the world's cleanest heavy-duty refuse collection truck, has been provided to Interstate Waste by Clean Energy, North America's leader in clean transportation, and Hallahan Truck Sales, Holtsville, NY-based natural gas Autocar refuse truck dealer. Clean Energy and Hallahan have partnered to supply natural gas-powered refuse trucks and companion fueling services to New York area refuse fleets. Based in Sloatsburg, NY, Interstate Waste Services provides solid waste and recycling services within Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey.

The demo truck deployed at the Live Earth Concert, like the almost 2,000 other natural gas garbage trucks now operating across the U.S., reduces greenhouse gas emissions by about 11 to 23 percent compared to diesel, according to a study of natural gas engines just completed for the California Air Resources Board.

Why Refuse Trucks Matter

The 136,000 refuse trucks operating in the U.S. burn approximately 1.2 billion gallons of diesel fuel a year, releasing almost 27 billion pounds of the greenhouse gas, CO2. Every gallon of diesel fuel they burn emits more than 22 pounds of CO2. In addition to contributing to global climate change, diesel-fueled trash trucks are one of the most concentrated sources of health-threatening air pollution in virtually all cities.

"Unlike many other trucks or buses, refuse trucks travel every residential street - stopping and starting and pouring their emissions onto virtually every door step," Underwood said. Diesel emissions are a well-known trigger of asthma attacks and are also linked to rising cancer rates.

Natural Gas Trucks: Fighting Climate Change in the Near and Long Terms

Replacing old diesel refuse trucks with the new fully-operational natural gas models offers the chance to achieve multiple benefits, not just in the near term but also in the long term. Their use helps address severe pollution and greenhouse gas challenges today, according to Underwood. "But natural gas trucks also help pave the way toward better and better fuel options in the future. The sophisticated natural gas engine can take increasing advantage of clean renewable bio-methane fuel, which is beginning to be produced from the greenhouse gases that now escape from the many thousands of landfills, sewage plants and agricultural waste sources across the country. In the longer term, they form a bridge to the era of hydrogen-fueled vehicles."

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