Navistar hybrid truck to be used in waste industry

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The first hybrid truck to be used for waste removal by Casella Waste Systems Inc. is on display at the International Truck booth at the 2008 Waste Expo being held in Chicago this week. International says its DuraStar Hybrid is the transportation industry’s first medium-duty diesel-electric hybrid truck, providing customers with improved fuel efficiency and reduced engine emissions.

“We are excited to partner with Navistar, a forward-thinking company that understands the rapidly changing global energy and resource constraints,” says John W. Casella, chairman and chief executive officer of Casella Waste Systems. “We are looking for other locations and applications to put additional International diesel-electric hybrid trucks or other hybrid vehicles into service to further reduce our environmental footprint and diesel fuel costs.”

Casella, which will use the truck to collect organics for recycling, says it is dedicated to improving how organic waste disposal is handled in Vermont; this includes using hybrid trucks to collect food waste from restaurants, schools and other institutions to be converted into odorless nutrient-rich soil. The company plans to buy more hybrid trucks, which would result in substantial fuel savings across its organics recycling fleet.

“I believe this marks the first time a hybrid truck has been put into service in this type of waste application, and this is just the beginning,” says Jim Williams, director of sales and distribution of new products for Warrenville, Ill.-based Navistar. “With diesel prices at an all-time high, an average fuel economy improvement of 30 to 40 percent translates into thousands of dollars in savings per truck, per year.”

The International DuraStar Hybrid diesel-electric hybrid truck is designed to provide dramatic fuel savings from 30 to 40 percent on standard in-city pickup and delivery applications; the fuel efficiency can increase to more than 60 percent in utility-type applications when the engine can be shut off, but electric power still operates the vehicle, according to the truck maker. Diesel emissions are eliminated completely when the hybrid truck operates equipment solely on the truck’s battery power, instead of allowing the engine to idle, International says.