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Article Archives : Auto Updates

Taking Off To A Cleaner Environment
Sat, 14 Jun 2003, 00:06

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(NAPSI)—Americans may be able to breathe a sigh of relief now that our airports are cleaning up the way they get around on the ground.

Air travel is the fastest growing segment of the transportation industry and experts estimate that ground service equipment is responsible for more air pollution than the airlines themselves. The increased airport traffic has resulted in airports going for more aggressive emission control programs.

The major solution to the problem of pollution, many agree, is the increased use of Alternative Fuel Vehicles (AFVs). Unlike gasoline vehicles, in which evaporative and fueling emissions account for at least half the total hydrogen the vehicles give off, natural gas and electric vehicles emit little or no evaporative emissions during refueling or use. These cars can emit about 70 percent less carbon monoxide than gas vehicles and 87 percent less nitrous oxide. In fact, one electric vehicle, the Ford electric Ranger, has been labeled as the cleanest vehicle in the world, with zero emissions.

Many airports are already on-board with AFVs and realizing the benefits. Since cost containment is often the key to profitability and fuel is one of the greatest and most variable operating expenses for these vehicles, AFVs have assisted in improving the airports’ bottom lines. In one test, on a per mile basis, fuel costs for natural-gas driven vehicles were 28.6 percent less than gasoline vans.

These air care cars are even comfortable. The new 2001 stretch Crown Victoria natural gas vehicle, for instance, offers five more inches of rear legroom for easier rear passenger entry and exiting. Ford is considered the industry leader in AFV production and provides airport crews and concessionaires with vehicles backed by a standard Ford warranty, trained service technicians at dealerships and customer service from established, reputable automotive manufacturers.

The AFVs seem to be a down-to-earth way to take the high road to cleaner air.

Many airports now require alternative fuel vehicles for ground service and concessionaires.

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