OK, I just want to go on the record as saying that I have yet personally to see one of the hybrid electric vehicles that UPS has been adding to its delivery fleet. This is a little odd, because I swear one of their vans is on our street at least twice daily. But, the Atlanta-based company apparently has invested in 130 more alternative fuel vehicles, and at least 30 will be split between my state (New Jersey) and my neighbor (New York). The other 100 are being sent out to California.
The estimated impact of these new vehicles: UPS says it will save 66,085 gallons of gas and divert 671 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions, which is about the same as taking 127 passenger roads off U.S. roads and highways for a whole year.
The latest addition will bring the total of the alternative fuel fleet at UPS to more than 2,000 (about 2,022 to be exact). So far, it has spent upwards of $25 million on alternative fuel alternatives. UPS already has about 250 hybrid electric vehicles on the road. It also uses vans and cars that run on natural gas, liquefied natural gas, propane and all-electric. The new hybrids will hit the road in early 2011.
The innards of the latest vehicles combine a conventional diesel engine with a battery pack. The electricity in the battery is supplemented by regenerative braking.
This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com