Lynden Transport’s steady and consistent efforts at improving efficiency and reducing waste have paid off with real savings for the company and the environment. In 2008, Lynden Transport was the first and only trucking company in Alaska to join the SmartWay Transport Partnership and to earn the Green Star business award. Over ten years later, the company continues to improve and to see the results of these efforts.
"We started in 2008 with a complete re-evaluation of our line tractor specs for aerodynamics and reduced weight," explains Charlie Mottern, Lynden Transport Director of Maintenance. "With these changes we were able to dramatically improve our fuel economy and have continued to improve on these specs incorporating design elements into local and regional applications."
"Our trailer design maximizes payload and cube for the lane that it travels," he continues. "We have used heated and refrigerated trailers and all electric and electric standby for over 30 years. Wide-based tires and side skirts have been added in lanes that are best suited for those enhancements."
These changes have led to a substantial improvement in efficiency and emissions reductions. Since 2009, Lynden Transport has improved freight efficiency (measured in grams of CO2 per ton mile of freight moved) by 29 percent, miles per gallon by 43 percent, and reduced nitrogen oxide and particulate matter emissions by 63 percent and 81 percent respectively.
"We also work to reduce the time trucks spend idling by working with drivers and using automatic shutoff in areas where it isn’t a safety hazard," says Dallas Freeman, Director of Line Haul and Equipment. "We are partnering with the state to test hydronic heaters on our local trucks which allow us to shut the trucks off in extreme temperatures. Throughout the company, we have reduced the average truck idle time per truck by nearly 14 percent in the last five years."
Small changes add up to big savings in other areas as well. Nearly 20 separate energy efficiency upgrades at Lynden Transport’s facilities have led to an overall 37 percent reduction in natural gas use and 18 percent reduction in electricity used.
The Anchorage Service Center replaced all exterior lights with efficient LEDs resulting in a 30 percent reduction in electric use in the past 10 years. "Each year we pick a project, replacing old lights, adding motion sensors, repairing insulation. We even removed the lights in the vending machine," says Richard Hennagin, HSSE Manager.
The Anchorage facility also cut its heating needs by over 50 percent by investing in automatic thermostats and insulated dock shelters. The shelters prevent heat loss around the trailers when they are parked at the dock for loading and unloading. Lynden will continue to strive to operate in the most efficient manner with the highest regard for the health and safety of our employees and protection of the environment.