Survey: Half of corporate fleets now under emissions scrutiny

Managers are exercising caution when it comes to adopting alternative fuels.

Just two years ago, barely one-quarter of all fleet managers were actively keeping tabs on the emissions they were responsible for producing. Now, close to half of businesses are measuring those emissions, according to a new survey out from fleet management company PHH Arval. The company is one of those allied with the Environmental Defense Fund to help businesses bring green and sustainability strategy to their fleet operations.

Of the 49 percent of fleet managers who say they measure emissions, approximately two-thirds are tracking actual fuel data, the survey reports. PHH Arval believes this is one of the most accurate ways to measure driver behavior and fuel economy, which are some of the first things companies focus on in an effort to curb emissions.

Almost 70 percent of the survey respondents say they have an environmental goal for their fleets, which was up slightly from the 2009 Green Survey. Most were either focused on fuel efficiency or curbing greenhouse gas emissions. According to PHH Arval:

"Greenhouse gas emissions are the most useful in driving appropriate behavior, as this type of goal allows a company to accurately track its fleet's impact on the environment. We do not recommend technology goals, as they do not provide an insight into environmental impact. A flex fuel vehicle may be better or worse for the environment than a traditional gasoline vehicle depending on what fuel is used, its overall fuel efficiency, etc."

What's holding back fleet managers from taking action? Most of them say it is cost, although many of the respondents also point out that they have found savings as a result of fleet management activities. In any case, here are the top five things holding businesses back:

  1. Cost
  2. Can't get vehicles
  3. Vehicles don't exist
  4. Lack of environmental data
  5. Lack of financial data

There was a new survey question about alternative fuels adoption and interest. The responses showed that fleet managers are exercising caution in this area. The most popular alternative, by far is gasoline hybrid, with close to 42 percent of the survey respondents considering this technology. Another 20 percent are thinking about biodiesel.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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