“In use, they would save the company about 900,000 gallons of diesel fuel annually,” said Chris Trajkovski, Frito-Lay National Fleet-Sustainability manager. “The natural gas-powered trucks would save the equivalent of $2.50 a gallon compared with diesel-driven ones, as well as reduce greenhouse emissions by 23 percent,” the executive added.
“The good news is that it is a win-win for us, both in terms of our sustainability strategy and reducing our costs. The payback for the extra cost of the natural gas trucks is a year and a half,” said Michael O’Connell, senior director of Fleet Capability at the company.
Frito-Lay, which operates one of the largest private delivery fleet in the United States, estimates it could take six to seven years to convert all of the company’s tractor-trailers.
Aside from high diesel prices, the growing market share for natural gas in the heavy truck sector reflects the proliferation of affordable natural gas in the country. Domestic exploration and new extraction techniques (horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing or fracking) are on the increase, reported The New York Times’ vehicles-related blog.