Recycling trucks have adopted innovative technologies in collecting garbage and recycling, so solid wastes and recycling industries can offer a better quality of life to the communities and neighborhoods they serve
Some of these innovations are simple, such as making them less fuel dependent, but others are more complex and therefore innovative, such as emitting less particulate matter and nitrogen oxide, helping improve air quality, and reducing operating costs. These innovations are helping lower the greenhouse gas emissions responsible for climate change. This new kind of recycling truck relies on many advanced technologies that allow garbage to be collected and transported safely, effectively and with less impact to the environment.
Alternative fuel trucks
The new garbage trucks will use alternative fuels such as natural gas, biofuel and biodiesel. Many big cities in the US are using these garbage trucks fueled with natural gas and other alternative fuels. Biofuel is made from renewable sources, such as landfills, sewage treatment plant waste and other organic waste. Moreover, using natural gas may reduce greenhouse gas generation by 20 to 25%, compared to petroleum-based fuels. Alternative fuels are one of the cleanest alternatives for fueling available today.
Hybrid truck technologies
Hybrid trucks help conserve energy and reduce operating costs. Every time this type of truck uses its brake, energy is captured and stored on lithium ion batteries or by pressurizing hydraulic fluid in one tank and releasing it to another tank. This stored energy can provide a large number of benefits, such as allowing the diesel engine to turn automatically off and avoid unnecessary idling, or to help propel the truck when the driver re-engages. It can also be used to power the truck’s trash compactor.
The nature of garbage trucks, which is stop-and-go, makes them best suited to benefit from being hybrid. This technology helps garbage trucks reduce their fuel use by 20 to 35% and cut carbon dioxide emissions, and 10% in long trips.
Improvements in diesel fuel and engines
While there are already many kinds of trucks that use alternative fuels, many of them still use diesel to work. Therefore, new kinds of diesel that protect the environment were created for these. One of this is Ultra-low sulfur diesel, a new standard for the sulfur content in on-road diesel fuel. The sulfur in this kind of diesel is much lower than in the standard kind. It doesn’t only reduce sulfur compound emissions, but also allows advanced air pollution control systems to be used, otherwise ruined by sulfur in the regular diesel kind. It is estimated that low-sulfur diesel can reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by 2.6 million tons each year.
With these new recycling truck innovations, the earth, environment and world economy are saving many resources otherwise spent, besides creating a better life for the neighborhoods and communities they serve.