Written on: August 3, 2022
By American Journal of Transportation
Hi Pro, Inc., a nationwide mail logistics contractor with a 40-year history of servicing the United States Postal Service, celebrated the launch of its propane autogas vehicle fleet at a ribbon cutting ceremony in Commerce City, Colorado. During the ceremony, Hi Pro, Inc. CEO Joshua Stoneback unveiled the five, class 6 ultra-low nitrogen oxide (NOx) box trucks and state-of-the-art propane autogas infrastructure that will reduce emissions in the Denver metro.
Propane autogas trucks are proven to reduce greenhouse gases and NOx emissions to near-zero levels. In fact, Hi Pro’s propane trucks have a comparable lifetime low-carbon footprint to electric vehicles but achieve those emissions reductions at a fraction of the price over the lifecycle of the truck. Each box truck will produce 281 metric tons of CO2 less per year than the same electric vehicle charging and operating using Colorado’s electric grid.
“With these propane autogas trucks, Hi Pro, Inc. will be environmentally sustainable and financially sustainable,” said Stoneback. “We’ve all felt the pain of filling up at the pump with gasoline or diesel. With propane, I won’t feel that anymore. The cost of propane autogas is a fraction of what I would be paying for diesel. And to top it off, the fleet is reducing emissions at the same time. It’s a win-win for everyone.”
The vehicle fleet and infrastructure, provided by AmeriGas, are part of a $1 million research pilot project titled, “Delivering Clean Air in Denver: Propane Trucks and Infrastructure in Mail Delivery Application,” and is possible thanks to funds through the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy and the work of Drive Clean Colorado. The ultra-low NOx propane vehicles, developed by Roush CleanTech, reduce NOx emissions by 96 percent compared to diesel. The engine is certified to the optional ultra-low NOx CARB .02 standard, operating 90 percent cleaner than the EPA’s strictest heavy-duty standard.
“Commerce City is disproportionately impacted by poor air quality compared to other cities in Colorado,” said Bonnie Trowbridge, executive director of Drive Clean Colorado. “Launching these propane autogas vehicles, which are much cleaner than their diesel counterparts, will help to lower emissions to provide a better air quality for the community.”
As part of the program, Drive Clean Colorado will work in partnership with DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to gather real-world data on the vehicles to showcase the use of propane autogas as an alternative energy source. Drive Clean Colorado will work with the Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) to publish its findings to demonstrate how other fleet owners can implement propane autogas into their operations.
“Hi Pro is leading the way down the path to zero emissions for the USPS and for the Denver metro, demonstrating that we have clean energy solutions we can implement today to make a real difference,” said Steven Whaley, director of autogas business development at PERC. “Considering the number of miles the delivery trucks drive every day, this is a major step toward cleaner air to breathe and a healthier community for Commerce City.”