Alternative Approaches to Reducing Fuel Consumption in Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicles


The preceding chapters this report focus primarily on the technical feasibility and cost-effectiveness of technologies aimed at improving fuel efficiency in medium- and heavy-duty vehicles. The technologies discussed represent options available for meeting a new federal fuel efficiency standard based on metrics previously discussed. However, technology alone is not the only approach that manufacturers, carriers, and operators have at their disposal to improve vehicle efficiency. Nor are fuel efficiency standards the only mechanisms available to policymakers aiming to incentivize more efficient movement of passengers and goods. The purpose of this chapter is to present alternative approaches for improving the fuel efficiency of medium- and heavy-duty-vehicle (MHDV) operations.

This chapter identifies the following set of alternative approaches and discusses their pros and cons:

1. Changing fuel price signals


Fuel taxes

Cap-and-trade: Implications for trucking

2. Technology-specific mandates and subsidies


Technology mandates

Equipment subsidies

Low-carbon fuel standards

3. Alternative/complementary regulations


Emissions limits

Size and weight limits

Mandatory speed limits

4. Other complementary approaches


Intelligent transportation systems

Construction of exclusive truck lanes

Congestion pricing

Driver training

Intermodal operations

In some cases these alternative approaches can be complementary to fuel efficiency standards. In other cases these alternatives could substitute for fuel efficiency standards. For each approach a short description is provided, as well as the advantages of the approach, the disadvantages of the approach, and any potential implementation issues associated with its application. The committee recognizes that the alternative approaches included herein are complex and require a great deal more study beyond the scope of this report, particularly with respect to the potential impact on fuel efficiency improvements that each approach may have.


Fuel Taxes

The rationale for government imposition of fuel-savings standards is that trucking firms decide to implement fuel-saving technologies based on the market price of fuel, which does not include the external costs associated with climate change and fuel security. As a result, firms do not implement technologies that are socially efficient since the private return is too low. This social inefficiency can be corrected most efficiently by imposing a tax equal to the external costs. If, for example, the problem being addressed is carbon emissions, all transportation fuels should bear a tax proportional to their carbon content. If the price of fuel were higher to reflect the external costs, more fuel-saving technologies would be adopted. In addition, the higher price of fuel would lead to more fuel-efficient operations. An example is provided by the European experience. Fuel prices in Europe are significantly higher than in the United States because of higher taxes. Higher prices have not yet led to adoption in the European truck fleet of many of the more advanced technologies such as bottoming cycle and ultralight structures. However, the committee was told by one major international engine manufacturer that it decided to develop a new engine with turbocompounding for worldwide sale based on the expected payback from the higher fuel prices in Europe. The turbocompounding in this application is

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7 Alternative Approaches to Reducing Fuel Consumption in Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicles OVERVIEW alternatives could substitute for fuel efficiency standards. For each approach a short description is provided, as well The preceding chapters in this report focus primarily as the advantages of the approach, the disadvantages of the on the technical feasibility and cost-effectiveness of tech- approach, and any potential implementation issues associ- nologies aimed at improving fuel efficiency in medium- and ated with its application. The committee recognizes that heavy-duty vehicles. The technologies discussed represent the alternative approaches included herein are complex and options available for meeting a new federal fuel efficiency require a great deal more study beyond the scope of this re- standard based on metrics previously discussed. However, port, particularly with respect to the potential impact on fuel technology alone is not the only approach that manufactur- efficiency improvements that each approach may have. ers, carriers, and operators have at their disposal to improve vehicle efficiency. Nor are fuel efficiency standards the only CHANGING FUEL PRICE SIGNALS mechanisms available to policymakers aiming to incentiv- ize more efficient movement of passengers and goods. The Fuel Taxes purpose of this chapter is to present alternative approaches for improving the fuel efficiency of medium- and heavy- The rationale for government imposition of fuel-savings duty-vehicle (MHDV) operations. standards is that trucking firms decide to implement fuel- This chapter identifies the following set of alternative saving technologies based on the market price of fuel, approaches and discusses their pros and cons: which does not include the external costs associated with climate change and fuel security. As a result, firms do not 1. Changing fuel price signals implement technologies that are socially efficient since the Fuel taxes private return is too low. This social inefficiency can be Cap-and-trade: Implications for trucking corrected most efficiently by imposing a tax equal to the 2. Technology-specific mandates and subsidies external costs. If, for example, the problem being addressed Technology mandates is carbon emissions, all transportation fuels should bear a Equipment subsidies tax proportional to their carbon content. If the price of fuel Low-carbon fuel standards were higher to reflect the external costs, more fuel-saving 3. Alternative/complementary regulations technologies would be adopted. In addition, the higher price Emissions limits of fuel would lead to more fuel-efficient operations. An ex- Size and weight limits ample is provided by the European experience. Fuel prices Mandatory speed limits in Europe are significantly higher than in the United States 4. Other complementary approaches because of higher taxes. Higher prices have not yet led to Intelligent transportation systems adoption in the European truck fleet of many of the more Construction of exclusive truck lanes advanced technologies such as bottoming cycle and ultralight Congestion pricing structures. However, the committee was told by one major Driver training international engine manufacturer that it decided to develop Intermodal operations a new engine with turbocompounding for worldwide sale based on the expected payback from the higher fuel prices In some cases these alternative approaches can be comple- in Europe. The turbocompounding in this application is mentary to fuel efficiency standards. In other cases these 

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0 TECHNOLOGIES AND APPROACHES TO REDUCING THE FUEL CONSUMPTION OF MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY VEHICLES expected to reduce fuel consumption by 3 to 5 percent. The freight operations to postal delivery to electric utility trucks European truck fleet also uses more aerodynamic fairings, to trash removal. Given a higher fuel price because of the relies more on driver-training for fuel-saving operations, and tax, firms will optimize their operations to realize the great - uses almost exclusively diesel engines, except in the lower est fuel savings while still performing the required tasks. range of Class 1. Finally, higher fuel costs would be passed Setting standards instead requires that regulators consider, on in the form of higher truck shipping rates, reducing the in addition to technology options, the complexity of tasks demand for shipping by truck and the diversion of truck ship- to be accomplished, the variety of conditions under which ments to other modes, particularly rail, leading to additional trucks will be operated, and the changing uses over the life of fuel savings. the truck. A mandated fuel efficiency standard, rather than a market-based solution such as a tax, has a higher probability of counterproductive unintended consequences because of Advantages this complexity. A tax affects the incentives associated with all of the ele- Finally, a fuel tax is a clear statement of the additional ments in the freight transportation system. It provides incen - costs being imposed on the truck sector to accomplish soci- tives for technology adoption and operational efficiencies etal aims, fostering transparency in the public policy process. (such as reduced idling, improved driver education, etc.). In contrast, fuel efficiency standards can often obscure the These actions, in many cases, offer significant fuel savings. costs to the public. In addition, a tax affects the utilization of vehicles already on the road, while fuel consumption standards typically affect Disadvantages only new vehicles and can be implemented only slowly over time as the vehicle fleet transitions to the more fuel-efficient Taxes involve setting a price signal and letting industry vehicles. choose the most efficient means of reducing fuel consump- Fuel taxes would contribute toward achieving more ef- tion. In the transportation sector, setting taxes is complicated ficient outcomes in additional ways. To the degree that de- because all fuels must be appropriately priced to avoid dis- mand for transportation is elastic, as discussed in Chapter 6, tortions across fuel markets, for example between diesel and a fuel tax, by raising the cost of shipping, will tend to lower gasoline. The response to the tax, however, is uncertain and miles driven, thereby reducing congestion, accidents, and empirical estimates of elasticities are not precise enough to other driving-related negative externalities. Furthermore, predict the resultant fuel savings. However, setting standards increased fuel taxes would augment the highway trust fund, also involves uncertainties as to fuel savings and operational permitting the construction of improved transportation op- costs due to indirect effects, as discussed in Chapter 6. tions, or at least offsetting the decline in revenues from In addition, a fuel tax may not provide sufficient incentive reduced fuel consumption by more efficient vehicles. for technology development, particularly given the political Most importantly, a fuel tax economizes on the informa- difficulties associated with implementing a tax large enough tion needed by regulators. Maximizing economic efficiency to have significant incentive effects. Last, a fuel tax, while requires that the marginal cost of reducing fuel consumption leading to immediate savings from utilization in the existing be the same for all vehicle manufacturers and be equal to the fleet, will impose costs on the fleet that were not anticipated marginal cost of actions that vehicle operators can take to re- when the investments in technology and vehicles were put duce fuel use. In this way, the low-cost means of reducing fuel in place and is likely to raise issues of equity. These issues consumption are exploited before utilizing higher-cost reduc- could be accommodated by a scheduled phase-in of taxes. tion technologies or techniques. The information needed to find the lowest-cost pattern of fuel consumption reductions Other Considerations places large demands on regulators when the manufacturing cost of a technology varies among manufacturers, the in-use A variable fuel tax could be used to reduce the volatility cost varies depending on the specific use, and other measures in prices faced by trucking firms and manufacturers. For such as driving and truck-routing procedures exist that can instance, a fuel tax could be implemented in a manner that reduce energy consumption. A fuel tax provides incentives would provide a price “floor” for fuel. This would reduce for private firms to take action and relies on the individual uncertainty and allow a clearer signal for investment in fuel- knowledge and incentives manufacturers and shippers have saving technologies. However, such a variable tax would to reduce costs. The trucking industry is a competitive one, create an uncertainty in the amount of dollars flowing to the and the committee has found that the companies are very highway trust fund, thus jeopardizing federal, state, and lo- focused on reducing fuel costs, subject to the requirements cal highway construction projects. Last, a fuel tax aimed at of delivering the freight or accomplishing the particular work reducing fuel consumption of heavy-duty vehicles needs to requirements. Furthermore, the industry is highly varied, be considered in light of its impacts on the light-duty vehicle with trucks utilized in very different tasks from long-haul and non-road sectors.

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 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES TO REDUCING FUEL CONSUMPTION Cap and Trade: Implications for Trucking permits, to weather variation, and even to interest rate changes. At the time of this writing Congress is considering enact- Introduction of a cap-and-trade system will increase ing a “cap-and-trade” system to control the emissions of gas- governmental administrative burdens for monitoring and es that contribute to climate change.1 Such a system would policing the system, supervising markets in permits and de- cap emissions at a predetermined level and issue a number of rivatives that will emerge in financial markets. Similar to the permits equal to that cap. Any controlled entity such as elec- case with fuel taxes, there may be concern that the increase tric utilities or oil refineries would have to surrender a permit in fuel prices, given political limitations on how tight a cap for each ton of CO2 emitted. The permits could be traded, can be legislated, will be too small to have major impacts in so that an entity desiring to increase production and thereby generating change in technology adoption. emit additional tons of CO2 or other global-warming gasses A cap-and-trade system is designed to cap carbon or other could buy additional permits from a permit holder willing global-warming gases, not oil consumption. While higher to sell. The market price of permits will be reflected in the carbon prices will be passed on to fuel prices and reduce oil cost of production and passed on to the ultimate consumer. consumption, oil security concerns may require additional In the trucking sector the permit price would have the same measures. While fuel consumption standards would reduce effect as a tax on fuel. oil consumption, a cap-and-trade system could accommodate an additional charge within the system so as to provide the Advantages additional incentive to save oil. For example, it could be required that 1.25 tons of CO2 emissions coming from oil The cap-and-trade system introduces a price on CO2 emis- be traded for 1 ton of coal emissions. sions, as a tax would, and provides incentives for the adop- tion of fuel-saving technologies as well as for the adoption TECHNOLOGY-SPECIFIC MANDATES AND SUBSIDIES of operational methods to save fuel. Applying this system over the economy as a whole it can lead to an efficient pat- Technology Mandates tern of emission reduction. For example, if it is cheaper to reduce emissions from electric utilities than from another A technology mandate would be a regulation requiring industrial plant, the electric utility will cut emissions and sell operators of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles to purchase the permits it no longer needs to the industrial emitter. The and use specified designs or models of vehicles or compo- industrial emitter will be willing to buy those permits as long nents. The required vehicles and equipment would be those as it is cheaper than reducing its emissions by technology or embodying fuel-saving technologies. The regulator would operational changes. establish a certification process to identify energy-efficient Once a cap is in place, regulators may have less of a vehicles and components and would publish lists of comply- need to establish fuel consumption standards for a particular ing models. The California Heavy-Duty Vehicle Greenhouse covered sector. This is because any reduction in CO2 emis- Gas Emission Reduction Regulation is the most relevant sions coming from trucking, for example, will result in more example of such a regulation. emissions elsewhere among covered entities, so that the total In December 2008 the California Air Resources Board emissions remain unchanged. Similar to the case with fuel (CARB) adopted a regulation requiring certain operators of taxes, this economizes on the information regulators need certain kinds of trucks to either use EPA SmartWay-certified about technology, operating conditions, and duty cycles for tractors and trailers or to retrofit their vehicles with Smart - trucking operations. Under a cap-and-trade system individual Way-verified technologies. The SmartWay vehicles and firms make the decisions based on their knowledge of the equipment save fuel primarily through improved tractor and operations and the price of carbon emissions. trailer aerodynamics and the use of low rolling resistance tires. The regulation applies to 53-ft or longer van trailers Disadvantages and to tractors that pull these trailers in California. Trac - tors that drive less than 50,000 miles per year are exempt, By setting a cap, the ultimate emissions are known, but the and tractors and trailers that operate within a 100-mile ra- cost of achieving the cap is uncertain. The cost will emerge dius from a home base are exempt from the aerodynamics in the market as firms consider technological and operational requirements. changes versus the cost of purchasing permits. The price will Operators who choose to comply by retrofitting must fluctuate as the demand for permits will change in response equip their trailers with low rolling resistance tires and with to technological developments, to changes in expectations aerodynamic fairings or other SmartWay-approved technolo- about future economic growth and hence the demand for gies. The technologies required will depend on a percentage greenhouse gas emissions reduction assigned to each device 1 H.R. 2454 was passed by the House of Representatives on June 26, 2009. by CARB. The bill sets a cap on CO2 emissions that covers about 85 percent of total From 2010, when the rule goes into effect, through 2020, U.S. emissions and includes domestic oil refiners.

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 TECHNOLOGIES AND APPROACHES TO REDUCING THE FUEL CONSUMPTION OF MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY VEHICLES CARB expects the regulation to reduce diesel fuel consump- • In California the Carl Moyer Memorial Air Quality tion by 750 million gallons in the state and 5 billion gallons Standards Attainment Program is a grant program that nationwide. For comparison, diesel motor fuel purchases subsidizes replacement or retrofit of diesel engines in California in 2007 were 3.2 billion gallons (CARB, n.d., in heavy trucks, locomotives, and other applications. 2009). Originally conceived to reduce emissions of criteria toxic pollutants, the program is described also as a means to reduce GHG emissions, mainly by subsidiz- Advantages ing hybrid applications. The program has been dis- Equipment mandates are seen as a simpler alternative in bursing about $14 million annually since 1998. Idling circumstances where a performance standard (e.g., a gallons- reduction retrofits are eligible for 100 percent funding, per-ton-mile or gallons-per-cubic-foot-mile fuel consump- and fleet modernization (new vehicle purchases re- tion standard) would be difficult to apply or enforce. From placing older, more polluting equipment) for up to 80 an enforcement perspective, it is often easier for regulators percent funding. However, the subsidized equipment to confirm a manufacturer’s or user’s adoption of a technol- must exceed the emissions limits imposed on all ve- ogy mandate (e.g., side fairings) than to determine whether hicles by law, and as idling and emissions regulations a performance metric is being achieved. have become more stringent, opportunities for truck operators to qualify for the grants have been reduced (CARB, 2008). Disadvantages • Federal grants are available under the EPA and the Under a performance standard, the regulated party is Clean Fuels Grant Program for hybrid deployment in free to adopt any combination of measures that meets the trucks and urban buses (see Chapter 6). standard. Each party can be expected to adopt the most cost- • A second California program is subsidizing replace- effective approach for the application. Equipment mandates ment of older trucks used by drayage operators at the lack this flexibility and therefore may increase regulatory state’s seaports, for the purpose of reducing pollutant compliance costs. For example, under the California regula- emissions. The program is funded at $400 million tion, the fuel-saving benefits of required trailer fairings will (CARB, 2008). vary greatly from user to user. It is most likely that some • Several other states have offered financial incentive users could have obtained greater fuel savings by some programs for installation of idle reduction devices alternative practice at a cost equal to or lower than the cost (Leavitt, 2005). of the fairings. In addition, a technology mandate that is not • American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 appropriately “tuned” to the characteristics or operational (P.L. 111-5) provided $300 million for federal and state aspects of a particular vehicle or class of vehicles may not programs to pay for diesel emissions reduction. A share achieve desired benefits due to incompatibility between the of this will be directly available to truck operators as technology and vehicle use. In such cases, especially when financial assistance for equipment replacement (e.g., characteristics or operations are uncertain, an emissions through low-interest loans). The funds are adminis- standard may perform better. tered by EPA, in part through the SmartWay Clean Diesel Finance Program (EPA, 2009b). • The Energy Improvement and Extension Act of 2008 Equipment Subsidies (P.L. 110-343) give EPA the authority to exclude ex- Another approach to encouraging technology adoption empt idle reduction devices from the 12 percent federal is to offer government subsidies. The federal government excise tax on new truck purchases. EPA has certified and the states have offered a variety of financial incentives 70 devices as eligible. The exemption is estimated to to firms and individuals for purchases that reduce energy be worth $700 to $1,000 per truck to some purchasers consumption. The forms of incentives include tax credits, (EPA, n.d.; Miller, 2009). cash grants, and credit assistance. For individuals, federal incentives for the purchase of energy-saving home improve- Advantages ments and for of hybrid cars are well-known examples (EPA, 2009a). Financial incentives may be most effective in encourag- Existing programs applicable to medium- and heavy- ing early adoption of new technologies when the benefits are vehicle target primarily reductions in criteria pollutants uncertain, the technology is not widely known to users, and rather than GHG emissions or fuel economy, but some of the cost may be high because the technology is in limited these programs are also intended to promote fuel savings and production. The subsidy then transfers some of the risk from the program structures could be applicable to fuel economy the early adopters to the public. Subsidies are also used, as incentive programs. Examples include the following: the examples above illustrate, where fairness to small busi- nesses is a concern. In the California Carl Moyers and dray-

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 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES TO REDUCING FUEL CONSUMPTION age operator programs, part of the motivation was to avoid all GHG reductions. New research in the biofuels area has disproportionate harm to small businesses from stringent asserted that direct and indirect land use changes associated new regulations. with biomass feedstock production may, in fact, increase overall global GHG emissions if not done properly. Disadvantages Implementation Issues Subsidies are best seen as a possible transition strategy rather than a major permanent feature of pollution control The greatest issue facing the implementation of an LCFS and energy-saving programs. If a significant U.S. greenhouse is in constructing an appropriate metric for measuring total gas emissions reduction program is enacted, the cost burden fuel-cycle carbon emissions from fuel production. This in- of compliance will be ubiquitous and subsidizing these costs cludes not only biofuel production but also nonconventional will be impractical except in very limited circumstances. fossil fuels, such as petroleum from tar sands or shale. Other implementation issues have to do with administrating, moni- toring, and validating an LCFS measurement claim. Low-Carbon Fuel Standard The regulation of fuel quality and “chemistry” is not ALTERNATIVE AND COMPLEMENTARY REGULATIONS novel. The EPA currently regulates sulfur content for on- road diesel fuel, which was reduced from a limit of 500 ppm Emission Standards sulfur pre-2007 (40 CFR 80.29) to 15 ppm sulfur now (40 CFR 80.520). Building off the fuel standard approach, the A carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions standard may incen- State of California has moved forward with a low-carbon tivize more efficient engine operations since CO2 is directly fuel standard (LCFS) that regulates the average carbon related to the amount (and type) of fuel burned in the engine. content of fuel used in the transportation sector. The LCFS A CO2 emissions standard could work similarly to a fuel ef- has target carbon content values that will help the state meet ficiency standard. However, one of the advantages would be GHG reduction goals over the next decade and beyond. As to allow consideration of nonfuel-saving actions that could constructed in California, the LCFS is aimed at regulating lower CO2. For example, the introduction of alternative, fuel providers (e.g., oil refiners) and will ultimately require low-carbon fuels could be an option for meeting the standard. the introduction of larger percentages of alternative fuels in Typical diesel fuel is ~86 percent carbon by mass, while the transportation sector than would be otherwise expected. natural gas is only ~75 percent carbon by mass. Therefore, These alternative fuels include biofuels, natural gas, and two vehicles can achieve the same fuel efficiency, yet one electricity, to name a few. Other states and regions of the operated on natural gas would have a lower CO2 emissions country (e.g., the northeastern states) are also considering rate. Biofuels could also be addressed in this manner through implementing their own LCFSs. accounting for carbon uptake in the feedstock used to pro- duce the fuel, and this is discussed in more detail below. Advantages Truck Size and Weight Mandates The primary advantage of an LCFS is that (if accounted for properly) it ensures a certain level of GHG reductions Motor vehicle weights and dimensions are governed by relative to a non-LCFS benchmark. A second advantage of a complex mix of federal and state regulations. The main a LCFS (if constructed in a similar fashion as the California provisions of the federal regulations are as follows: approach) is that it regulates only a small body of entities (fuel providers) and so regulatory oversight is somewhat • Maximum gross weight of vehicle on interstate high- simplified. A third advantage is that an LCFS provides in- ways: 80,000 lb. centives for the research, development, and deployment of • Maximum axle weight on interstate highways: 20,000 alternative fuels for transportation. lb on a single axle; 34,000 lb on a tandem axle • Maximum weight determined by the number and spac- ing of axles (the “federal and state bridge formula”) Disadvantages • Width of vehicles: states must allow 102 in. on the The lower energy density of the fuel means that more National Network for Large Trucks (interstates plus gallons are used, larger fuel tanks will be required on trucks, 160,000 miles of other main roads) road use taxes applied on a per-gallon basis will go up, and • Trailer length and numbers: states must allow single carbon emissions associated with transportation of the fuel trailers at least 48 ft in length and tractors pulling two will rise. Another disadvantage of an LCFS is the difficulty 28-ft trailers on the national network. in assuring that life-cycle emissions (including those from upstream feedstock and fuel production) in fact lead to over- Federal law forbids the states to impose more restrictive

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 TECHNOLOGIES AND APPROACHES TO REDUCING THE FUEL CONSUMPTION OF MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY VEHICLES limits on roads where the federal limits apply, but a grand- hauling coal, fully loaded, from a mine to a rail head and father provision allows preexisting, more liberal state limits returning empty. If a change in the legal weight limit allowed to remain in effect. States set limits on roads not covered the operator to increase each truck’s payload by 50 percent, by federal law, issue permits exempting vehicles from the from 50,000 to 75,000 lb, truck-miles to haul a day’s output limits under specified circumstances, and are responsible of coal would decrease by 33 percent. However, the trucks for enforcement. Exemptions and exceptions from nominal would consume about 12 percent more fuel per mile when limits are numerous, and enforcement often is imperfect. loaded, or 6 percent more on the round trip. The fuel savings would be 100 percent × [1 – (1.06 × 50/75)] = ~29 percent. The regulations have been justified as serving a variety of purposes. The original state regulations (dating from the Similarly, an increase in the maximum legal volume ca- early 20th century) and the first federal regulations (dating pacity of trailers would allow a nearly inversely proportional from 1956, when the present federal aid highway program decrease in truck-miles of travel in a hauling operation in was created) served to fix design parameters for road con- which all loaded vehicles carried payloads that utilized their struction. The 1983 federal preemption of state regulations full volume capacity. A trucking industry study estimated more restrictive than the federal limits on the Interstates was that a 97,000 lb six-axle tractor-semitrailer (a vehicle that economically motivated, to reduce the costs of interstate industry groups have advocated legalizing in the United commerce. The most recent federal action, a 1991 law that States) applied in a fully weight-constrained operation will blocked the states from allowing expanded use of longer consume 15 percent less fuel per ton-mile than an 80,000 lb. combination vehicles (multi-trailer vehicles longer than the tractor-semitrailer and a turnpike double (twin 48-ft trailers) federally sanctioned twin-28-ft-trailer combination) was in a fully volume-constrained operation will consume 28 justified as a safety measure (TRB, 2002). percent less fuel per ton-mile than a single-trailer combina- The regulations have important economic consequences. tion (Tunnell, 2008). They influence the cost of truck transportation to shippers However, an operation in which trucks frequently oper- and the costs of highway construction and maintenance, ate at maximum volume capacity may gain little advantage and probably influence highway accident losses, although from an increase in the weight limit, and operations that in complex ways. They affect international commerce (U.S. normally are weight constrained may gain no advantage limits differ from those of Canada and Mexico, and contain- from an increase in legal trailer dimensions. Also, operations ers shipped in international trade often are not consistent in which trucks frequently travel with partial loads in order with U.S. regulations) and railroads' profitability and market to meet delivery schedules and operations in which trucks share. Proposals to change the weight regulations always make multiple stops to partially load or unload will not be are controversial. Historically, liberalization usually has able to fully utilize an increase in the legal maximum capac- been opposed by the railroads, certain safety groups, some ity. Consequently, in practice, a hypothetical change in size states, unionized drivers, and some carriers. Liberalization and weight limits that increased both maximum volume and is supported by shippers, some carriers, and some states. weight capacity by 50 percent would yield less than a 33 Several detailed studies by DOT (2000), the Transportation percent reduction in truck-miles for the entire fleet. Research Board (TRB, 1990a,b, 2002), and others (e.g., in A high percentage of trucks on the road at any time are Canada; RTAC, 1986) have examined the costs and benefits empty or are loaded to less than either their weight or volu- of alternative size and weight regulations. metric capacity limit. In the 1990s less than 50 percent of VMT among all five-axle tractor-semitrailers was driven by trucks with 55,000 lb or less operating weight (see Fig- Advantages ure 7-1). Historical experience and prospective studies indicate The effect of a change in size and weight limits on fuel that liberalizing size and weight regulations (i.e., allowing consumption in a particular trucking operation will depend vehicles with greater cargo volume capacity and/or greater on the characteristics of the operation and on the details cargo weight capacity) could significantly reduce fuel con- of the regulatory change. Consequently the impact of a sumption in freight transportation and also reduce total proposed change on VMT or fuel consumption is difficult shipper costs. For example, if all loaded trucks carried the to project, and past estimates have varied widely. Table 7-1 maximum legal payload weight at all times, the reduction in shows some illustrative projections of fuel savings. vehicle-miles of truck travel would be inversely proportional Each of the studies noted in Table 7-1 considered induced to the increase in payload. (Percent fuel savings, however, freight traffic and diversion from rail in their estimates. would be less than the percent mileage reduction because the The relatively small impacts estimated in the TRB studies heavier trucks would consume more fuel per mile of travel. reflect those studies’ less liberal hypothesized limit changes For example, fuel consumption per mile for a class 8 truck and their conclusion that short heavy double trailer vehicles increases by roughly 5 percent for every 10,000 lb increase would be attractive only in a limited range of applications. in weight [Greszler, 2009]). A more recent study (Woodrooffe et al., 2009) surveyed As a hypothetical example, consider a fleet of trucks 100 companies that operate private fleets about the potential

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 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES TO REDUCING FUEL CONSUMPTION FIGURE 7-1 Five-axle tractor-semi vehicle-miles traveled by operating weight (cumulative percentage). SOURCE: FHWA (1997). Figure 7-1 Five axle tractor semi vehicle miles traveled by.eps bitmap--legibility is degraded benefits of liberalized size and weight limits. In-depth inter- reduction was 23 percent. This prediction appears optimistic, views were conducted with seven companies as case stud- since it could be attained only if all trucks began all their ies. Two of the companies reported that because they carry runs fully loaded to the weight limit and the heavier trucks low-density cargo, their trucks always reach volume capacity had the same rate of fuel consumption per mile as trucks in at a gross weight lower than the present limit. The other present operations. five companies at least occasionally load their trucks to the The impacts of past U.S. limit revisions have never been weight limit. These five were asked to report the percentage systematically monitored. In the United Kingdom the con- fuel consumption reduction they would expect if the gross sequences of a recent change in the weight limit have been weight limit were increased sufficiently to add 14,000 lb to measured (McKinnon, 2005). In 2001, the U.K. weight limit cargo capacity. The median estimate of fuel consumption was raised from 41 to 44 metric tons, allowing a 12 percent increase in maximum payload weight. Dimensional limits were not changed. Extrapolating the first two years of data on trends in truck travel and weight distributions, the study estimated that the eventual net effect would be a reduction TABLE 7-1 Some Illustrative Projections of Fuel of 170 million vehicle-kilometers/year by 2007, represent- Consumption Savings ing a 0.6 percent reduction in travel of freight vehicles. The percentage change in fuel consumption would be somewhat Change in Change less. The estimate includes an allowance for road traffic Truck Vehicle in Fuel generated by the reduced cost of truck transport. The impact Miles Traveled Consumption Study Limit Change (%) (%) has been small because a large fraction of freight vehicles do not operate at the weight limit. The characteristics of truck DOT 97,000-lb six-axle semis and –11 –6 (2000) 131,000-lb short doubles travel in the United Kingdom are different from those in the nationwide United States, but this example illustrates that the increase in fuel efficiency from a weight limit increase can be much DOT 148,000-lb turnpike doubles –23 –13 (2000) on interstates nationwide; less than the increase in maximum cargo capacity. 124,000-lb short doubles on A 2002 TRB committee (TRB, 2002) reviewed the esti- most roads mates of costs and benefits of revisions to size and weight TRB 89,000-lb 6-axle semis and –3 –2 limits in the past DOT, TRB, and Canadian studies. It con- (1990a) 96,000-lb short doubles cluded that liberalizing the regulations would reduce ship- nationwide pers’ freight transportation costs. Highway agencies costs TRB 110,000-lb short doubles –3 –2 for constructing and maintaining roads might increase or (1990b) nationwide where compatible decrease, depending on the details of the regulatory changes with bridges and on how agencies changed their practices to accommodate NOTE: Short doubles in the studies were twin 28- or 33-ft trailers; turnpike the traffic changes; however, properly designed revisions to doubles were twin 53-ft trailers. The TRB studies did not estimate fuel limits would yield freight cost savings exceeding any added savings; the values above are consistent with the studies’ traffic change extra infrastructure costs. estimates.

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 TECHNOLOGIES AND APPROACHES TO REDUCING THE FUEL CONSUMPTION OF MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY VEHICLES Disadvantages a configuration with a tractor pulling two full-sized trailers) on roads with high design standards. Several The main arguments against increasing the limits have western states have from time to time advocated this been that highway safety would be degraded, that diversion change. of freight from rail to truck would increase the social cost of • Allowing operation of a new kind of configuration, freight transportation, and that highway agencies could not double trailers that would be longer and heavier than afford the cost of upgrading infrastructure to accommodate the twin-28-ft double now in use nationwide but larger trucks. The 1990 TRB studies concluded that the safety shorter and more maneuverable than turnpike doubles. impact of sensibly liberalized limits would be positive, be- The DOT and TRB studies described above considered cause the dominant influence on safety would be a reduction this kind of vehicle, which today is little used. in truck VMT. The studies found that the inherent safety dif - ferences between the old and new vehicles would be slight. More ambitious proposals call for construction of new The 2002 TRB study acknowledged that understanding of the exclusive right-of-way for larger trucks. Four states, with factors that determine the safety performance of large trucks the partial support of a DOT planning grant, are studying is incomplete and therefore called for regulatory changes to construction of truck-only lanes on segments of Interstate- be tested through rigorously monitored large-scale pilots. 70 through Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri, together Regarding other public costs, raising limits would in- with staging areas for assembly and disassembly of longer crease air pollutant emissions as a result of induced freight combinations (FHWA, n.d.). Enactment of more restrictive demand and diversion of freight from rail to truck. The limits also has been proposed, and a bill for this purpose studies’ projections imply that the change in emissions will (S.779, Safe Highways and Infrastructure Preservation Act) be small in comparison with total truck emissions and its was introduced in Congress in 2009. significance will diminish as truck emissions regulations The 2002 TRB committee emphasized that changes become more stringent. Traffic impacts are projected to be in size and weight regulations made in coordination with positive on net because of the reduction in truck VMT. complementary changes in highway management would Regarding highway agency costs, all the TRB studies offer the greatest potential for improving system perfor- recommended that truck fees be adjusted to cover the cost of mance. Specifically, the committee recommended adjusting providing infrastructure for them. The 2002 TRB committee truck fees to cover highway agency costs, improved bridge concluded that DOT studies had overstated the probable cost management, systematic monitoring of truck traffic, reform of bridge repairs and replacements that would be required of enforcement methods, and vehicle safety regulations to accommodate larger trucks and recommended that limit governing the performance of larger trucks. revisions be accompanied by improvements in the states’ asset management programs. Mandatory Speed Limits (Road-Speed Governors) All the studies predict that liberalizing limits would divert some freight from rail to truck. This diversion would not Road-speed governors have been standard features on increase the social cost of freight transportation provided trucks with electronic engine controls for many years. In trucks paid fees that covered their infrastructure costs and the U.S. market at this time, it is up to the vehicle owner to provided that pollution, safety, and congestion effects are decide whether or not to use the road-speed governor at all small or positive, as the TRB studies predicted. Regulatory and what speed to select if the governor is used. Most large changes that allowed widespread use of longer combination truck fleets do use road-speed governing today, with typical vehicles were projected to have a greater effect on rail traffic governed speeds in the 65 to 70 mph range. A few fleets set than changes in weight limits alone. their governors as low as 60 mph, while many smaller fleets and owner-operators do not use the governor feature at all. Implementation Issues In Europe all trucks have their road-speed governors set by the factory to a specified value which is determined The regulatory changes most commonly proposed include by law. The approach evaluated in this section would be in the following: implementing a European-style mandatory road-speed gov- ernor regulation in the U.S. market. • Raising the federal weight limit to 97,000 lb. This would allow about a 25 percent increase in payload Advantages for weight-limited shipments on Interstates and other main roads. A bill introduced in Congress in 2009 The NESCCAF/ICCT report (2009) projects a fuel sav- (H.R. 1799: Safe and Efficient Transportation Act of ings of 0.7 percent per mph speed reduction for an aerody- 2009) would accomplish this. namically optimized tractor/trailer combination truck on a • Giving states the option of allowing operation of lon- simulated long-haul duty cycle. Other sources put the fuel ger combination vehicles (primarily turnpike doubles, savings at up to 1 percent per mph for tractor-trailers with

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 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES TO REDUCING FUEL CONSUMPTION today’s standard aerodynamics, when cruising at 65 mph. of road-speed-governor settings. These fleets would Most studies determine the benefit of lower road speeds lose the benefit of being able to determine their own using 65 mph cruise as a baseline, and they do not take into trade-offs. On the other hand, most smaller fleets and account the fact that well under 100 percent of the truck’s owner-operators are not very sophisticated in their duty cycle is spent at cruise speed. This leads to a tendency cost-benefit analysis, and these operators might benefit to overestimate the potential benefit. from a mandatory requirement. A fleet that operates long-haul tractors in areas with little • If governed speeds are set significantly below the congestion can gain significant benefits. For example, a fleet typical travel speeds of light vehicle traffic, the result that governs today at 65 mph could see a 3.5 to 5 percent will be a significant increase in traffic congestion and benefit by lowering governed speed to 60 mph, while a fleet an increased risk of accidents because of increased that runs 70 mph could see a 7 to 10 percent fuel savings by speed differentials between trucks and light vehicles. cutting speed to 60. Light-duty vehicle drivers in the United States are not A u niversal truck road-speed-governor requirement accustomed to the sort of lane discipline required to would almost completely eliminate issues with speeding achieve good traffic flow and safety in situations where by trucks, possibly providing significant safety benefits. large speed differentials exist. (Preventing excessive Only in the case of tampering would speeding be possible, speeds by trucks could be a safety benefit.) and tampering would be easy to detect. Any truck running • Having all trucks governed to the same speed will significantly over the required governed speed setting could result in a situation where all trucks operate at nearly, be assumed to be tampered with. but not exactly, the same speed. Inevitable tolerance The cost of implementing mandatory road-speed gov- differences will result in slight speed differences. ernors is very low. For new vehicles the cost would be in Thus, when one truck passes another, it will take a engineering development only, with no manufacturing cost long time and create a potential for rolling roadblocks unless features need to be added to make tampering more dif- that impede light-duty vehicle traffic. This disadvan- ficult. For existing vehicles with electronic engine controls, tage could be reduced by allowing drivers to override the retrofit cost would be limited to development cost and the governed speed for brief periods to enable faster the cost of a service stop. passing. Current road-speed governors (and current European regulations) do not allow for this override feature. Disadvantages • Tampering might become a significant issue. Vehicle A number of disadvantages must be taken into account and engine manufacturers have gotten pretty sophis- before making decisions regarding mandatory implementa- ticated in their techniques for making tampering tion of road-speed governors: difficult, but some operators will have a significant financial and personal incentive to tamper. • If the regulation is applied to existing trucks, many of • Many long-haul truck drivers are paid by the mile. them will need changes to the rear axle ratio to match A road-speed governing regulation would amount to cruise engine speed to the new, lower road speed. a direct pay cut for these drivers. For many owner- • Governors will only save fuel in situations where a operators, implementation of a road-speed-governor truck would otherwise run faster than the governed requirement could make the difference between mak- limit. Vehicles that operate in urban or congested areas ing the monthly truck payment and becoming unem- will normally see little or no benefit from governing. ployed. The incentive to run longer (illegal) driving This means that the overall fleet fuel savings will be hours would become stronger. significantly less than projections derived from open- • Engine and vehicle makers are developing increasingly road driving scenarios. sophisticated control features aimed at changing driver • In situations where the fuel savings is significant, so is behavior in ways that save fuel. One feature used today the increase in trip time. Higher trip time decreases the allows drivers a slightly higher road-speed-governor distance a driver can cover during a workday, meaning setting if they follow other operating requirements that more trucks would be required to move a given aimed at saving fuel. This gives the fleet what it wants amount of freight. This has three undesirable effects: (fuel savings) and the driver what he wants (higher pay increased shipping costs, increased traffic congestion, and a shorter trip time). Allowing features like this and increased opportunity for accidents because of could greatly complicate a regulation. the increase in the number of trucks on the road. The lower the governed speed is set, the bigger these issues Implementation Issues become. • Larger fleets today are relatively sophisticated in All electronic engines today already have a road-speed- balancing fuel cost and trip time through their use governor feature built in. The feature would need to be

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 TECHNOLOGIES AND APPROACHES TO REDUCING THE FUEL CONSUMPTION OF MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY VEHICLES modified to prevent owner or user changes to the speed-limit would not be desirable. Like many other good-sounding fuel- setting, and to prevent the feature from being turned off. saving ideas, the unintended consequences of road-speed These changes would be easy for vehicle and engine manu- governing can outweigh the benefits if great care is not taken facturers to implement. Making these features sufficiently in implementation. tamper-proof might prove to be a much greater challenge. Road-speed governors on new trucks would be easy to OTHER COMPLEMENTARY APPROACHES implement in a relatively short time frame. Manufactur- ers will need to modify and validate their existing road- Intelligent Transportation Systems speed-governor features to meet the requirements of the new regulation. It would also be relatively easy to develop Intelligent transportation systems (ITS) encompass a calibrations that could be retrofitted to existing vehicles with broad range of wireless and wire-line communications-based electronically controlled engines. Getting owners to bring information, control, and electronics technologies. When in their vehicles for a retrofit calibration that includes a new integrated into the transportation system infrastructure, and road-speed governor might be very difficult, however. Most in vehicles themselves, these technologies help monitor and owners would try to put this off as long as possible, prefer- manage traffic flow, reduce congestion, provide alternate ably for the life of the truck. routes to travelers, and enhance productivity—all to im- Older vehicles that have mechanical fuel systems could prove mobility and safety. DOT has developed the National in theory be retrofit with road-speed-governors, but several ITS Program Plan for ITS, which provides a new vision for issues would need to be overcome. First, systems would need surface transportation in the United States in the following to be developed for this market, and they would probably not areas: be low cost. There were road-speed-governor systems for these vehicles many years ago, but they were not low cost or • Travel and transportation management widely used. Second, some way to force implementation by • Travel demand management owners would be required. These older vehicles tend to travel • Public transportation operations few miles per year, so the potential fuel savings is limited. • Electronic payment The owners of older trucks often lack the money to pay for • Commercial vehicle operations an upgrade. On the other hand, if older vehicles were exempt • Emergency management from the speed-governor regulation, this would increase the • Advanced vehicle control and safety system value of older vehicles and encourage these trucks to be maintained rather than scrapped. Since older trucks have The national ITS architecture (see Figure 7-2), provides much higher emissions, any incentive to prolong their life a common structure for the design of ITS. It is not a system FIGURE 7-2 U.S. national ITS architecture. SOURCE: FHWA (2008). Figure 7-2 National ITS architecture.eps bitmap--legibility is degraded

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 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES TO REDUCING FUEL CONSUMPTION design nor design concept but rather a framework around schemes, vehicles are identified via an in-vehicle transponder which multiple design approaches can be developed, each or by a video image of the license plate if the vehicle does one specifically tailored to meet the individual needs of the not have a transponder. For traditional ETC systems, vehicles user. must pass through a gate at speeds less than 5 mph to allow ITS is very broad in scope. This section limits the discus- time for the vehicle to be recognized and the gate lifted or a sion to a sampling of the technologies that can play a signifi- light to change from red to green. With newer technologies, cant role in reducing the fuel consumption of medium- and such as open-road tolling, toll transactions can be processed heavy-duty trucks. The focus is on technologies and applica- at freeway speeds, thereby reducing the need for fuel-wasting tions in the infrastructure that help reduce the bottlenecks that speed fluctuations and for toll booth barriers. truckers often experience—namely, congestion, toll booths, ITS/Commercial Vehicle Operations (CVO) applications weigh stations, and inspection stations. In addition, Chap- are designed to enhance communication between motor car- ter 5 (under “Intelligent Vehicle Technologies”) discusses riers and regulatory agencies, particularly during interstate applications for reducing fuel consumption using technolo- freight movement. Commercial vehicle clearance, automated gies of ITS that reside primarily on the vehicle. However, roadside safety inspection, on-board safety monitoring, haz - several of these applications cannot operate exclusive of the ardous materials incident response, automated administrative infrastructure. For example, those that use real-time traffic processing, and commercial fleet management are some information require technologies on the infrastructure side of the key functions that ITS can provide for commercial to sense and communicate this information to the vehicle. vehicles. The Commercial Vehicle Information System and As noted in Chapter 6, traffic congestion in the United Networks (CVISN) program, created by the Federal Motor States produces significant cost in terms of wasted fuel and Carrier Safety Administration, is a nation-wide framework vehicle-hours of delay. There is a general consensus among of communication links that State agencies, motor carriers, transportation planners that we cannot “build” our way out of and stakeholders can use to conduct business transactions congestion but instead need to utilize existing capacity more electronically to support CVO. efficiently to improve mobility. Some ITS technologies that An example of the use of CVISN for supporting CVO is can contribute to utilizing capacity more efficiently are as electronic screening that includes safety screening, border follows: clearance, weight screening, and credential checking. Com- munications equipment at the roadside can query trucks • Historical or real-time traffic information provided to equipped with in-vehicle transponders as they approach a travelers via Internet Websites during pretrip planning station and issue a red or green light on the transponder so or via dynamic message signs or highway advisory drivers know whether to continue on the mainline (bypass) radio while en route. or report to the station for possible inspection. • Adaptive traffic signal control and coordinated signal In the United States there are currently two major na- timing. tional electronic screening programs, the North American • Ramp control such as ramp meters that use sensor Preclearance and Safety System (NORPASS) and PrePass. data to optimize freeway travel speeds and ramp wait As of March 2008, NORPASS was available in 11 states times. and Canadian provinces and had an enrollment of more than 93,000 trucks, and PrePass was available in 28 states and had Real-time traffic data can come from imbedded induc- an enrollment of more than 423,000 trucks (Maccubbin et al., tive loop detectors in the highway, such as the Performance 2008). Measurement System (PeMS) in California, or from traffic Development of the Comprehensive Modal Emissions probe vehicles that carry special cell phones that are able to Model (CMEM) which can predict second-by-second ve- communicate the vehicle’s position and velocity in real-time hicle fuel consumption based on different traffic operations to a traffic management center (TMC). The TMC integrates is important for developing and evaluating transportation a variety of ITS applications to facilitate coordination of policy for reducing fuel consumption (Barth and Boriboon- information and services within the transportation system. somsin, 2008). CMEM is comprehensive in that it covers Electronic toll collection (ETC) is one of the most suc- 30 vehicle/technology categories from the smallest light- cessful ITS applications with numerous benefits, including duty vehicle to Class 8 heavy-duty diesel trucks. In their delay reductions, improved throughput, and reduced fuel congestion research, Barth and Boriboonsomsin (2008) consumption. ETC systems support the collection and pro- worked with the California Department of Transportation’s cessing of toll plaza transactions without requiring the driver (Caltrans) Freeway Performance Measurement System. The to stop and pay manually, thereby increasing operational ef- PeMS collects real-time speed, flow, and density data from ficiency and convenience for travelers. ETC systems operate loop detectors embedded in freeways and makes the data as either integrated multistate systems such as the E-Z Pass available for transportation management, research, and com- system, or single-state or single toll authority systems such mercial research. as the Oklahoma Turnpike system. In most existing charging

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0 TECHNOLOGIES AND APPROACHES TO REDUCING THE FUEL CONSUMPTION OF MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY VEHICLES Advantages Disadvantages Evaluations of traveler information services, including Disadvantages, in terms of counterbenefits, are few if the real-time traffic information, show that these systems are ITS technologies described above are deployed. Maccubbin well received by those who use them. Benefits are found in et al. (2008) rated the impact of ITS deployment in six key the form of improved on-time reliability, better trip planning, goal areas: safety, mobility, efficiency, productivity, energy and reduced early and late arrivals. Studies show that driv- and environment, and customer satisfaction. For all ITS de- ers who use route-specific travel time information instead ployments, he gave one of the following impact ratings was of area-wide traffic advisories can improve on-time perfor- given for each goal area: mance by 5 to 13 percent (Maccubbin et al., 2008). ITS applications for traffic control using both adaptive • Substantial positive impact signal control and coordinated signal timing to smooth traf- • Positive impact fic can lead to corresponding safety improvements through • Negligible impact reduced rear-end crashes. Studies of signal coordination in • Mixed result five U.S. cities and one Canadian city have shown reductions • Negative impact in stops from 6 to 77 percent, while 2 statewide studies have • Not enough data shown average improvements from 12 to 14 percent (Mac- cubbin et al., 2008). Reducing the number of stops reduces For all of the ITS technologies described above, none fuel consumption because the trip time is shorter and there received a “negative impact” in any of the goal areas. Only are fewer energy-consuming speed fluctuations. one, ETC, received a “mixed result” in the safety goal area. Ramp metering reduces the number of acceleration- In Florida the addition of open-road tolling to an existing deceleration cycles and smooths traffic flow. Traffic signals ETC mainline toll plaza decreased crashes by an estimated on freeway ramp meters alternate between red and green to 22 to 26 percent. However, an earlier experience in Florida control the flow of vehicles entering the freeway. A study in found that driver uncertainty about toll plaza configuration Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN (Maccubbin et al., 2008) showed and traffic speeds contributed to a 48 percent increase in a 21 percent crash reduction and 10 percent higher freeway crashes at plazas with traditional ETC lanes. volumes compared to when the ramp metering was shut Although freeway ramp metering may result in higher down. A simulation study of two sections of freeway of that freeway volumes, it does require an additional stop before same system, each about 12 miles long, showed a 2 to 55 entering the freeway if the light is red. The additional time percent fuel savings compared to when the ramp metering spent accelerating from a stop to freeway speed increases was shut down. Data were collected over a three-day period, fuel consumption. and the performance of ramp metering depended on the daily fluctuations of the demand patterns (Hourdakis and Micha- Implementation Issues lopoulos, 2001). Ninety-five percent of toll plazas in the 108 largest met- A number of implementation issues arise with ITS that ropolitan areas in the United States are equipped with ETC. make it unique to other approaches: In Florida, ETC decreased delay by 50 percent for manual cash customers and by 55 percent for automatic coin ma- • Deployment of ITS is almost always regional, often chine customers (Maccubbin et al., 2008). On the Tappan covering several states, and rarely locally confined to Zee Bridge toll plaza near New York City, the ETC lane a single city. As a result, the planning, funding, opera- more than doubles vehicles per hour compared to the manual tion, and maintenance of ITS is multijurisdictional and lanes. requires cooperation at many levels of government, Electronic screening will reduce the number of stops Federal, State and local governments. and starts that commercial vehicles must make for weight • Interoperability is important when planning an ITS and safety inspections, thus reducing fuel consumption deployment that borders similar ITS deployments in and time spent idling in lines. The Oregon Department of adjacent jurisdictions. Transportation’s Green Light Program, a weigh-in-motion • Advanced traveler information system deployments in system, indicates a 36 to 67 percent reduction in pollut- rural and/or remote areas present special challenges. ants—particulate matter, carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides, Often a remote location makes equipment more suscep- carbon monoxide, and hydrocarbons—when trucks stayed tible to vandalism. Also, available power to the equip- at highway speed past a weigh station. Trucks that avoided ment may not be nearby and may require installation deceleration to enter a station and then acceleration to exit of power lines. also experienced over a 50 percent reduction in fuel con- • One of the largest and most common hurdles when sumption during this deceleration/acceleration event (see deploying ITS is to make the systems compatible with http://oregon.gov/ODOT/COMM/greenlight). existing systems already deployed. This can have a

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 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES TO REDUCING FUEL CONSUMPTION significant impact on ITS costs and deployment sched- problem of clearance or the lack of property for the extra ules. lanes. Several studies have been done in the United States • Privacy issues can present particular challenges in by state transportation departments, but to date no lanes have ITS projects, as new ITS technologies can often raise been built for the purpose of moving only truck traffic for any concerns about intrusive, “Big Brother”-type surveil- long distances. Figures 7-3 to 7-5 show the various designs lance. that have been considered. The provision of access points to/from the truck-only lanes depends on the nature of the corridor. For corridors Construction of Exclusive Truck Lanes serving long-haul/through trips, access points can be limited The idea of exclusive truck lanes covers several types of to key interchanges and staging areas (if long combination designs and how each type can be used to better improve vehicles [LCVs] are permitted to operate). On the other hand, efficient use of the highways, reduce traffic congestion, in urban corridors, where most trips are a relatively short improve safety for all highway vehicles, and reduce the cost distance, more access points would be required. In this case, of moving goods. Truck-only lanes allow for the possibility the cost and financial analyses should consider the tradeoffs for future technologies such as ITS to be used to improve among capital costs, usage/toll revenues, and safety. The all of the aforementioned items. Construction of these lanes use of tolls to offset some of the costs to build and maintain also offers the opportunity to upgrade the current highway these truck-only lanes must be cost effective for the vehicle designs for increased weight and traffic of the future. During owners, or they will be bypassed by drivers. the Missouri Department of Transportation study of Inter- The California State Route 60 and Interstate 710 corridor state-70 between Kansas City and St Louis, the supplemental studies demonstrated the importance of providing frequent environmental impact statement team chose the truck-only access points to increase truck traffic demands in urban lanes strategy as the preferred alternative, instead of the truck-only toll corridors that serve primarily short-haul trips. widen existing I-70 strategy. With that selection, the next step In the State Route 60 study, the tradeoff between limiting was to apply the strategy across the corridor as alternatives. access points and generating high demand was a major is- The study team assessed several alternatives before recom- sue, especially because high demand is desired to maximize mending a preferred one that, at a minimum, provides two possible toll revenues. Yet adding access points increases the truck-only lanes on the inside and two general-purpose lanes capital costs for the corridor. on the outside for both eastbound and westbound travelers. For LCVs to be effective, staging areas are needed to From the perspective of traffic and engineering, the truck- make up and break up the trailer combinations. The cost of only lanes strategy compared more favorably than the widen these staging areas might be borne by the owner/operator of existing I-70 strategy in the key areas of freight efficiency, the toll facility or by the private sector. In Oregon, staging safety, constructability, and maintenance of traffic. facilities are privately owned. The design that is the most prominent uses two lanes in each direction for truck-only traffic. These lanes are placed Advantages on the inside of the current lanes of the federal highways such as interstate highways. The design fits best in the rural The major advantage to truck-only lanes is that freight and country areas, so that the width of the road right-of-way can move faster and more efficiently along these corridors. does not become a problem. Longer and heavier loads on highways built for the extra In areas where that the road right-of-way does not allow loads and length would make the movement of goods more for construction of the lanes on the same level plane, another efficient. In addition, it is expected that congestion should be design is considered as a possibility. This design places the reduced by separating truck traffic from small-vehicle traffic. truck lanes over the current auto traffic lanes. There is a third With proper planning for cross-lane traffic and intersections, design that employs underground tunnels for getting past the along with access and egress, car and truck accidents will be Existing I-70 C L Option 2 Truck Only Lanes Inside FIGURE 7-3 Example of truck-only lanes. SOURCE: FHWA (2005). Figure 7-3 Example of truck only lanes.eps bitmap--legibility is degraded

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 TECHNOLOGIES AND APPROACHES TO REDUCING THE FUEL CONSUMPTION OF MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY VEHICLES FIGURE 7-4 Concept for reducing the need for additional road right-of-way. SOURCE: FHWA (2005). Figure 7-4 Concept for reducing the need for additional road.eps bitmap--legibility is degraded Congestion Pricing reduced and possibly there will be lower insurance costs as the accident rates drop. Congestion pricing refers to variable road tolls (higher Last, during the construction of the truck-only lanes, prices under congested conditions and lower prices at less there would be the ability to update and repair the present congested times and locations) intended to reduce peak- roadways at a cheaper cost than going out to maintain or period traffic volumes to optimal levels. Congestion pricing repair the current lanes. This is due to being able to use the could take different forms, such as area-wide network pricing material, equipment, and workers to do both jobs. on freeways and possibly arterials, “cordon” or area pricing in central business districts, or truck-specific congestion pric- Disadvantages ing such as the varying time-of-day gate fees implemented at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Financing for truck-only lanes will be difficult to ob- Area-wide congestion pricing is applicable to freeways tain. Tolls from trucks will not pay for construction and and major arterials where there is significant congestion. maintenance, and public funds and additional taxes would Cordon pricing strategies are only applicable in major urban be needed to meet the construction cost of these lanes. The areas with significant congestion. The limited geographic social return on investment has not yet been established. applicability of these two scenarios limits the fuel reduc- Furthermore, adequate right-of-way (ROW) is not cur- tion potential. Area-wide congestion pricing has greater rently available for the construction of these lanes, so ad- potential since it is estimated that nearly 30 percent of urban ditional land will need to be purchased, and the widening of vehicle miles travelled (VMT) occurs at the level of service the right-of-way and the clearing of land may have a negative E (unstable flow) or F (forced or breakdown flow; TRB, impact on the environment. 2000). Cordon pricing of metropolitan area central busi- Last, the time that it takes to construct a usable network ness districts, however, is estimated to affect only 3 percent of truck-only lanes will be several years before any benefits of total VMT nationwide. Furthermore, evidence suggests of a better transportation system will be realized. Due to the that there will be little, if any, overall impact on total truck long time that will be needed, new technologies may not be traffic (as the added costs are likely to be marginal, or the put into place until some of the lanes are completed. option of moving to the off-peak period is unacceptable), but FIGURE 7-5 Elevated truck lanes. SOURCE: FHWA (2005). Figure 7-5 Elevated truck lanes.eps bitmap--legibility is degraded

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 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES TO REDUCING FUEL CONSUMPTION rather that the benefits will occur from trucks operating under and, subsequently, reduced truck idling and fuel consump- improved flow conditions and therefore using less fuel due tion. Once the scheme was introduced, excess delays were to idling or stop-and-go operations. This will have a larger reduced by 26 percent, from 2.3 to 1.7 minutes per kilome- impact on smaller urban trucks since larger long-distance ter. For 70,000 truck-kilometers traveled and a reduction in trucks operate mostly on uncongested highways. excess idling delay of 0.6 minutes per kilometer, the scheme reduced truck idling by a total of 700 hours. With each truck-hour of idling consuming 0.8 gallons, the truck fuel Advantages consumption reduction from congestion pricing would have Congestion pricing could affect truck fuel consumption been 560 gallons annually (EPA, 2004). For trucks whose av- by: erage fuel consumption is 40 liters per 100 km (10.4 gal/100 km), this represents a reduction in fuel consumed of about • Shifting trips to less congested off-peak hours; 7.7 percent. • Reducing congestion for trucks continuing to oper- ate during peak periods, thereby improving their fuel Disadvantages economy and productivity (and offsetting the conges- tion pricing); As congestion is reduced, average speed increases be- • Reducing the overall movement of goods and related cause speed variability declines and less time is spent at idle. truck traffic due to higher costs; and Therefore, fuel consumption declines with increasing aver- • Increasing the shift in logistics patterns—for example, age speed—up to a point. When speeds average greater than leading firms are establishing consolidation centers on 40 to 55 mph and approach free-flow highway speeds, fuel the edges of urban areas to reduce truck activity within consumption rates increase. Congestion is likely to affect the congested area. urban service and delivery movements more than long-haul freight, and therefore it is the fuel consumption characteris - Most studies of the impact of congestion pricing have tics of smaller trucks that are most important. focused on all traffic, rather than distinguishing impacts If congestion pricing is implemented only on a limited on personal versus commercial vehicle traffic. A study for basis (e.g., only freeways), diversion of traffic to other non- the U.S. Department of Energy used travel demand models tolled facilities is likely to be a significant concern because in Minneapolis-St. Paul and Seattle, in conjunction with of the impacts on neighborhoods and local traffic. Increases speed-fuel efficiency relationships, to evaluate the combined in VMT on alternate routes could offset the fuel savings benefits of travel reductions and operating efficiencies from achieved from reductions in VMT and congestion on the area-wide systems of managed lanes.2 The results from facility itself. Therefore, congestion pricing will be most different scenarios ranged from a 0.1 to 2.5 percent impact effective at reducing fuel consumption if it is implemented on fuel consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions universally (on all major roads in an area). In addition, HOT depending upon the scenario. Extrapolating these results to lane implementation could potentially reduce available con- a national level based on projected 2030 congestion levels in ventional lanes, particularly if separation lanes are needed different urbanized areas led to an overall estimated reduc- between HOT lanes and conventional lanes. The impacts of tion in national fuel consumption ranging from 0.5 to 1.1 the loss of conventional lanes on traffic flow and costs need percent (EEA, 2008). Another national study of GHG emis- to be evaluated in decision making regarding HOT lanes. sion reduction strategies estimated that cordon pricing could potentially reduce VMT on the order of 3 percent if applied to Implementation Issues all metropolitan areas in the United States (Cambridge Sys- tematics, 2009). These are rough estimates for all vehicles, Congestion pricing has been experimented with in a however, and may not be transferable to truck traffic. number of areas, primarily on existing tolled facilities, but Evaluations of a cordon pricing scheme implemented has not yet gained widespread popularity. From a technical in London examined effects specifically on truck traffic standpoint, congestion pricing is relatively easy to imple- (Transport for London, 2006). The experience suggests that ment on facilities that already are tolled. The broader-scale the reduction in overall vehicle-kilometers of travel has application of this strategy beyond existing or proposed toll come almost exclusively from passenger vehicles rather than highway facilities, however, is likely to require universal trucks. However, the trucks benefited from reduced queuing deployment of electronic toll collection technologies. This will require coordination by a state or regional transporta- 2 These systems included high-occupancy/toll (HOT) lanes on freeways, tion agency. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) in which drivers of single-occupancy vehicles can use the lanes if they pay is encouraging greater experimentation in this area. In 2007, a fee, which depends on the congestion on the untolled travel lanes. Depend- DOT awarded $853 million in funding to five metro areas for ing on the scenario, either existing/planned high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) urban partnership agreements to reduce congestion, includ- lanes were converted to HOT lanes, or a new HOT lane was constructed ing a significant focus on tolling/strategies. alongside an existing/planned HOV lane to form two HOT lanes.

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 TECHNOLOGIES AND APPROACHES TO REDUCING THE FUEL CONSUMPTION OF MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY VEHICLES Driver Training and Behavior much as 4 percent (M. England, personal communica- tion, 2009). Driver training requires relatively low initial invest- • Idling. An average heavy diesel engine uses about one ment and appears to be a highly cost-effective strategy for gallon of fuel per hour while idling (CARB, 2005). To improving fuel efficiency and lowering operating costs and reduce fuel consumption, certain types of idling can harmful emissions. One option includes training designed to be minimized or eliminated altogether. For example, educate drivers about operating practices that influence fuel electronically controlled engines do not require sig- consumption and improve their driving skills. nificant warm-up or cool-down periods; a driver can Professional drivers of heavy-duty vehicles must provide reach 70 percent throttle as soon as oil pressure is up.3 proof to insurance companies of a minimum number of Moreover, the cost of turning the engine off and start- training hours. There are three different types of truck driver ing it again is frequently less than the cost of idling, training programs: private schools, public institutions, and since excessive idling leads to increased maintenance training programs run by the motor carriers themselves. Most and engine wear. private truck driving schools and publicly funded truck driv- • Tires. Tire condition and inflation are just as important ing programs provide a certificate or diploma upon gradu- on trailer tires as on tractor tires. ation, which is generally recognized and accepted by some • Speed. Road speed has a direct impact on aerodynamic carriers as proof of acceptable training. Most larger fleets drag. Higher speeds also cause extra wear on the en- require that all new drivers go through a company training gine and transmission systems. course that includes a driving course and test before they are • Cruise control. Cruise control optimizes the electronic allowed to drive for the company. control system’s fuel delivery and improves fuel ef- A review of tuition requirements for various commercial ficiency. driver’s license (CDL) schools in the United States found • Clutch control. Double clutching increases clutch wear that tuition can range from approximately $2,000 to $4,000 and reduces fuel efficiency. Double-clutching is not per driver. Some of these schools have already incorporated necessary on synchromesh gear boxes. Many drivers fuel-efficient driving instruction into their curricula. Drivers have learned to shift gears without using the clutch who have already obtained their CDL, however, would only except to stop and start. receive targeted instruction for fuel-efficient driving at a • Trip planning. Total fuel usage should be considered lower tuition rate (Latty, 2009). in trip planning. Also, each full stop requires ap - There are several fundamental principles and techniques proximately one-third of a gallon to return to highway each driver should know in order to minimize fuel consump- speed. Accordingly, drivers should consolidate stops tion, as described below. for food, fuel, and so forth to increase fuel efficiency (personal communication, L. Harvey, Natural Re- • M inimize speed fluctuation. S mooth acceleration sources Canada, 2009). reduces inertial effects as well as wear on the engine • Block shifting/skipping gears. Fewer gear changes and equipment, especially in hilly or mountainous results in greater fuel efficiency. The quicker a driver terrain. Rapid acceleration causes undue wear on the moves up the gearbox to top gear, the more fuel that is engine, drivetrain, and tires as well as requiring more saved. Each gear shift up improves instantaneous fuel fuel to achieve the same end result. In addition, brak- consumption by 10 to 30 percent (personal communi- ing results in a loss of energy as vehicle momentum is cation, L. Harvey, Natural Resources Canada, 2009). converted to heat. Braking also activates the air com- • Aerodynamics. Vehicles with adjustable roof-mounted pressor, which draws power from the engine, further air deflectors can improve fuel efficiency. Covering increasing fuel consumption. Smooth braking saves trailers, whether loaded or empty, ensuring curtains are fuel, reduces brake wear, and reduces engine load. tear-free, and correctly positioning a load all help re- • Engine braking. Use of the engine brake allows for duce aerodynamic drag and improve fuel efficiency. smooth deceleration, reduces brake wear, and saves • Oerfilling the fuel tank. Overfilling the fuel tank fuel. causes fuel to be lost through the breather vent when • Shift optimization and gear selection. One gear down it is heated and expands, resulting in lower fuel ef- may increase fuel consumption by approximately 15 ficiency. percent from optimal conditions. For example, for 10 • Maintenance. Changing air and fuel filters when to 15-liter engines found in Class 8 trucks, a constant vacuum specifications are exceeded can improve fuel operation below 1,300 rpm significantly improves fuel economy, with the target range being between 1,200 and 1,500 rpm. A 20 percent difference in the time 3 Personal communication, Juan Ortega, Longhorn International Trucks spent in top gear could improve fuel efficiency by as LTD.

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 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES TO REDUCING FUEL CONSUMPTION efficiency. Ensuring proper wheel alignment also has (3) accessibility of training programs to all drivers, especially a substantial impact on fuel efficiency, up to 3 to 4 those in remote areas. Companies will need to be convinced percent in some cases, as well as reducing tire wear of the cost savings and the need for this new way of manag- (TIAX, 2009). ing fleets and drivers. These challenges could be overcome through appropriate policy incentives and/or mandates. The financial and environmental impacts of driver training Advantages provide strong incentives for companies to adopt aggressive A ccording to a staff member at Natural Resources driver training programs. The promotion of such programs Canada, initial case studies indicate approximately 2 to 8 is fully consistent with the goals of the U.S. Environmental percent reduction in fuel consumption and associated GHG Protection Agency’s (EPA) SmartWay program. Develop- emissions due to driver training (personal communication, ment and/or validation of training programs in the United L. Harvey, Natural Resources Canada, 2009; DOE, 2008). States could be facilitated through SmartWay, with third- These results are consistent with values reported in the party training services joining the program as partners. Freight Best Practice case studies. In numerous case stud- ies, companies and drivers commonly reported an average Intermodal Transport fuel efficiency improvement of 5 percent, with actual results across all case studies reviewed ranging from 1.9 to 17 per- Intermodal transport involves the movement of goods by cent improvement (Freight Best Practice, 2009). more than one mode on a single journey (Corbett and Wine- All things being equal, driver training is expected to brake, 2007; Winebrake et al., 2008). Commonly, intermodal be more effective for high-load operations, since greater transport combines a truck mode with either ship or rail to energy requirements are at stake for each acceleration, gear improve shipping efficiency, reduce costs, or achieve some shift, and braking event. In addition, urban drive cycles are other desirable performance attribute. Because rail and ship expected to be more sensitive to improvements in driver be- are significantly less energy-intensive than truck, incentiv- havior than line-haul cycles. For example, the high number izing the movement of goods from truck to rail or ship is of starts, stops, and transient operation events associated with one way to improve the overall efficiency of the freight urban drive cycles could provide frequent opportunities for transportation system. smoother braking and acceleration. On the other hand, free- Estimates of total potential freight mode shifting have flow highway driving is usually extremely uniform in nature, been hypothetical in nature, rather than based on empirical providing little opportunity for driver modifications. This is data, due in large part to the complex nature of competition especially true for vehicles with a speed governor in place, between trucks and rail. The potential for mode shifting which effectively limits the one meaningful operational pa- is limited to certain types of commodities—those that are rameter (in terms of efficiency improvements) over which heavy, of low value, and do not have an acute need for the line-haul driver has control. reliable and timely delivery—for example, building stone Another advantage is that driver training programs work and waste, as well as certain movements—in particular, with existing and new equipment. Therefore, the typical lag long-haul movements where the efficiency benefits of rail times associated with market penetration of new technology outweigh the additional handling/logistics costs and time standards are avoided, and the trucking sector could see im- at either end, generally shipments longer than 1,000 miles. mediate benefits based on the existing truck fleet. Drivers Furthermore, market demand both affects and is dependent who use the proper driving methods are also accepted by the on the quality of service. Rail service improves significantly public as responsible providers for the transportation of the as demand between market pairs increases—increased traffic nation’s goods. Last, driver training requires relatively low (trains per day) increases the level of service that railroads initial investment and appears to be a highly cost-effective provide to customers and means that improved access is pos- strategy for improving fuel efficiency, lowering operating sible (shippers need access to rail facilities to ship via rail). costs and harmful emissions. In short, shippers choose a mode that minimizes their total logistics cost. Increasing intermodal freight shipments requires sig - Implementation Issues nificant investment in rights-of-way, in rolling stock, and in Three major challenges to implementing and promoting overcoming infrastructure-induced capacity constraints. The driver training have been identified by FleetSmart personnel investment should be justified based on the overall econom- (personal communication, L. Harvey, Natural Resources ics of the investment in the delivery system, and not just the Canada, 2009): (1) licensing requirements that do not require fuel consumption savings that would result from diversion of additional training or testing; (2) drivers’ schedules that freight from truck to rail. Nevertheless, there are fuel savings may prevent them from attending training programs; and, to be realized in some transport corridors where economi-

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 TECHNOLOGIES AND APPROACHES TO REDUCING THE FUEL CONSUMPTION OF MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY VEHICLES cally sound investments can be undertaken. For example, the ibility in using funds for nonhighway freight transportation Mid-Atlantic Rail Operations study (Cambridge Systemat- projects. ics, 2010a) estimated the potential for a 4-11 percent diver- To date, most of the easier rail capacity improvement sion based on $12 billion in infrastructure investment in the projects have been built, leaving primarily the more difficult midtlantic rail network. and expensive projects. In addition to being expensive, many of the remaining critical needs are set in urban environments where there are substantial constraints on rights-of-way as Advantages well as added costs for mitigation of impacts. These barriers Reductions in fuel consumption on the order of 60 percent will pose challenges to large-scale improvements in freight per ton-mile are typical for shifts from trucking (trailers or infrastructure sufficient to leverage significant truck-rail containers) to long-haul intermodal rail, with reductions mode shift. decreasing with shorter distances (Cambridge Systematics, 2010b). Savings can vary significantly, however, depending FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS on the distance of the movement and type of cargo. Finding 7-1. The committee examined a number of ap- proaches for reducing fuel consumption in the trucking sec- Disadvantages tor and found suggestive evidence that several approaches— Intermodal movement of goods requires large invest- particularly driver training and longer combination vehicles ments in infrastructure that can only be accomplished over (LCVs)—offer potential fuel savings for the trucking sector a long time period. In addition, freight delivery service and that rival the savings available from technology adoption for performance may be sacrificed in the shift from truck to rail certain vehicle classes and/or types. Any government action and/or ship. taken to reduce fuel consumption in the trucking sector should consider these alternatives. Implementation Issues Finding 7-2. Fuel taxes offer a transparent and efficient Many different policy mechanisms exist to promote inter- method for internalizing the potential societal costs of cli - modal transport. The approach that could have the greatest mate change and oil imports (e.g., energy security) and re- impact would be investments into intermodal facilities such ducing fuel consumption in road transport. Fuel taxes operate that delays and costs associated with cargo transfer and to make fuel-saving technologies more attractive and provide logistics are minimized. Actions that can affect a truck-rail incentives for saving fuel in operations, while involving mode shift include investment in rail and intermodal terminal fewer unintended consequences than standards. infrastructure, direct operating subsidies for railroads, land Finding 7-3. Fuel taxes can be designed to lessen the uncer- use regulations (e.g., to preserve rail sidings for rail-oriented businesses), and taxes to increase the cost of truck travel, as tainties facing the truck sector and provide a market signal previously discussed. for investments in fuel-saving technology. Improvements to intermodal transport, such as rail capac- Recommendation 7-1. Although the committee recognizes ity improvements and bottleneck relief, intermodal (truck- rail) terminals, and financial/pricing incentives, could poten- the political difficulty associated with increasing fuel taxes, tially encourage shippers to make greater use of rail in place it strongly recommends that Congress consider fuel taxes of trucks, increasing the efficiency of freight movement on as an alternative to mandating fuel efficiency standards for a ton-mile basis. The government could promote rail diver- medium- and heavy-duty trucks. sion through the promotion of freight “villages” that include Finding 7-4. A cap-and-trade system for carbon emissions intermodal terminals, transload facilities, and bulk storage facilities; expanded market reach for regional railroads; would provide market signals for truckers to adopt fuel- and continued improvement in rail infrastructure, including saving technology and operations. The signal, however, is signal, track, bridge, terminal, and clearance upgrades. more uncertain and volatile than would be provided by fuel While freight rail infrastructure investment has tradition- taxes. ally been left to the private sector, the federal government and Finding 7-5. A cap-and-trade system, such as is being con- a number of states have increasingly become involved in this issue for purposes of economic development and road traffic sidered by Congress that would limit total CO2 emissions by reduction. There are several state and federal programs that primary energy producers, would have implications for the will fund rail improvements to help bridge the gap between trucking sector. Regulators would then not need to develop investment needs and the availability of private capital. The standards for CO2 emissions that apply to specific trucks federal-aid highway funding program also allows some flex- and trucking operations, avoiding the complexity of differ-

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 ALTERNATIVE APPROACHES TO REDUCING FUEL CONSUMPTION ent classes and duty cycles of trucks. On the other hand, the reduced (e.g., reducing speeds from 65 mph to 60 mph may cap-and-trade system would likely involve new administra- lead to 3 to 5 percent fuel savings. Road-speed governors tive burdens for monitoring emissions from the primary have a number of disadvantages and potential unintended producers and policing the system. consequences. Finding 7-6. Methods to encourage the adoption of spe- Finding 7-10. Intelligent transportation systems enable cific technologies—mandates or subsidies—are best utilized more efficient use of the existing roadway system by improv- when options are limited and the compatibility with truck ing traffic flow and reducing or avoiding congestion. This usage and duty cycle are clear. results in a reduction of large variations in speed, idle time, and periods of high acceleration, which have a considerable Finding 7-7. When there are several fuel-saving options impact on fuel consumption. Many ITS applications are now a nd complex truck operating conditions, performance being tested or deployed throughout the country. Although standards are likely to be superior to specific technology the cost of deployment is not insignificant, it may allow requirements. deferment or as an alternative to expanding the existing roadway system. Finding 7-8. Increasing vehicle size and weight limits of- Finding 7-11. Congestion pricing offers several potential fers potentially significant fuel savings for the entire tractor- trailer combination truck fleet. This approach would need to benefits: reduced congestion increases overall efficiency in be weighed against increased costs of road repair. Example the freight delivery system, and increases fuel savings on the case studies explored in this report demonstrate fuel savings order of 0.1 to 7.7 percent based on the examples described of up to 15 percent or more. These savings are similar in size herein. but independent and accumulative of other actions that may Finding 7-12. There are significant opportunities for sav- be taken to improve fuel consumption of vehicles; therefore the net potential benefit is substantial. To achieve these sav- ings in fuel, equipment, maintenance, and labor when drivers ings would require the federal government to: are trained properly. Indications are that this could be one of the most cost-effective and best ways to reduce fuel con- • Change regulatory limits that currently restrict vehicle sumption and improve the productivity of the trucking sector. weight to 80,000 lb and that freeze LCV operations on For example, cases evaluated herein demonstrate potential the Federal Interstate System. fuel savings of ~2 percent to 17 percent with appropriately • Establish a regulatory structure that assures safety and trained drivers. compatibility with the infrastructure. One possible Recommendation 7-3. The federal government should regulatory structure has been proposed by the Trans- potation Research Board in Regulation of Weights, encourage and incentivize the dissemination of information Lengths, and Widths of Commercial Motor Vehicles, related to the relationship between driving behavior and fuel Special Report 267 (TRB, 2002). savings. For example, one step in this direction could be to • Consider the necessary changes that would be re - establish a curriculum and process for certifying fuel-saving quired to permit reasonable access of LCVs to vehicle driving techniques as part of commercial driver license breakdown yards and major shipping facilities in close certification and to regularly evaluate the effects of such a proximity to the interstate. curriculum. Recommendation 7-2. Congress should give serious con- Finding 7-13. Intermodal transport offers significant envi- sideration to liberalizing weight and size restrictions and ronmental and energy advantages compared to trucking alone should consider how the potential fuel savings and other on an individual cargo movement basis. benefits of such liberalization can be realized in a way that Finding 7-14. The system-wide opportunities for inter- maintains safety and minimizes the cost of potential infra- structure changes. modal transport are currently limited based on existing infrastructure, customer demands, cargo compatibility, and Finding 7-9. Mandatory road-speed-governor settings have economic feasibility. long been used in Europe. Most large U.S. fleets already use speed governors, and they could be implemented more REFERENCES generally in the U.S. market. The committee found that the Barth, Matthew, and Kanok Boriboonsomsin. 2008. Real-world CO2 im- benefit of these governors is significant only for vehicles that pacts of traffic congestion. Transportation Research Record, submitted spend a large amount of time at high-speed cruise, where one March 31, 2008. might expect ~1 percent fuel savings for each mile per hour

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