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Brown Line earns second EPA award

Posted on Thu, Feb 07, 2019

Brown Line truck 1200x630Brown Line's fleet, part of the Lynden family of companies, is among the most efficient fleets in the nation and the company has once again earned the SmartWay High Performer Award from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

According to the SmartWay Transport Partnership, just over two percent of all SmartWay carriers operate fleets so clean and efficient that they make the SmartWay High Performer list for all metrics. Whether its carbon, particulate matter or nitrogen oxide, high-performing SmartWay carriers drive cleaner, emit fewer of these pollutants – and burn less fuel – for every mile they travel and for every ton of freight they move, as compared to their SmartWay peers.

"Our team is proud to receive this award two years in a row," says Brown Line President Bill Johansen. "We continue to work with our drivers on improving driving habits to minimize idle time, sudden starts and stops and to improve mileage. This recognition is shared with the entire Brown Line team."

Since 2007, Brown Line has invested in new aerodynamic tractors and trailers, wide-base super single tires and high efficiency engines, dramatically improving miles per gallon (MPG), reducing idle time and lowering carbon emissions.

In the last five years, Brown Line has improved its fuel economy by nearly 40 percent as reported to the U.S. EPA SmartWay Transport Partnership. Most of Brown Lines’ fleet is less than 5 years old. The new tractors are equipped with modern emissions control systems that significantly reduce air pollution. Since 2012, Brown Line’s fleet has reduced its nitrous oxide and particulate matter emissions per ton mile by 44 percent and 62 percent respectively.

Over 75 percent of Brown Line reefer units are plug-in and have contributed to a nearly 90 percent decrease in idle time since 2010. "As new trailers are purchased our goal is 100 percent," Bill says. "This year we will be testing a new aerodynamic system in place of trailer tails that is designed to reduce the low pressure drag behind the trailer. The new system is expected to increase fuel economy and durability while reducing weight."

Tags: Green Lynden, Brown Line, Grocery Chill and Frozen, LTL, Temperature-Controlled, Truckload

Alaska West Express celebrates 10 years of green

Posted on Thu, Dec 27, 2018

Alaska West Express tankerAlaska West Express truly walks the talk when it comes to handling and transporting hazardous materials over challenging terrain with the utmost respect for safety, pollution prevention and the environment. Over the last five years, Alaska West has transported an average of 14 million gallons of fuel annually with no accidents. This year alone, drivers have traveled nearly 5 million miles without a recordable accident. Since joining the EPA SmartWay Transport Partnership in 2012, Alaska West has increased fuel efficiency by 25 percent while increasing the average payload by 10 percent. This means moving freight with less fuel and an overall 26 percent reduction in CO2 emissions per ton mile.

"Over the last several years, we have continued to make Alaska West Express’s trailering equipment more efficient," explains Alaska West Express President Eric Badger. "Our 406 and 407 tanker fleet is predominantly 5-axle, leading to a dramatically increased payload while reducing fuel consumption and number of trips. We have also purchased eight DOT 407 chemical tanks to allow us to haul over 2,000 gallons more per load."

Earlier this year, Alaska West Express took delivery of 10 Wilson aluminum 53-foot 5-axle flatbed trailers providing a 72,000-pound payload. They also feature a tire inflation system with heat-sensing devices that will alert the driver to an elevated wheel-end temperature. Alaska West drivers helped test the system from prototype to production.

According to Director of Maintenance Tommy Douthit, auxiliary power units provide heat and power to the cab when the truck is turned off and have helped reduce idle time by over 40 percent. Tire pressure monitoring equipment and laser alignment of tires reduces tire wear and also contributes to fuel efficiency. Newer, more efficient engines, combined with the improved fuel economy and payload, have led to a 39 percent reduction in particulate matter emissions and an 83 percent reduction in nitrous oxide emissions. "This contributes to better air quality in places like Anchorage and Fairbanks where winter inversions can trap pollution," Tommy says.

The Fairbanks line haul fleet is equipped with an onboard oil filtration system that allows maintenance to stretch out oil changes from 750 hours to around 2,500 hours or more. "We are only performing full oil changes on an annual basis now," Tommy says. "This translates to about a 75 percent reduction in engine oil use. Nothing goes to waste, as used oil from the trucks is then used to heat the parts warehouse in Fairbanks." The company is also testing a disc brake pad free of copper and other metals to meet an upcoming EPA requirement to preserve sea life in the Pacific Ocean.

Efficiency is not limited to equipment. Over the last several years, Alaska West’s Fairbanks facility has converted nearly 90 percent of its lights to LEDs which have dramatically improved lighting quality and led to a savings of $50,000 per year in electricity costs. "This year, we also upgraded our primary heating system boilers to improve efficiency and added propane fired air exchangers to augment our floor heat. This gives us faster recovery time and quicker thaw cycles for our equipment to allow us to haul freight in snowy conditions," Tommy says.

Tags: Alaska West Express, Green Lynden, Ground

Lynden Air Cargo installs fuel-efficient Microvanes

Posted on Fri, Dec 14, 2018

Lynden Air Cargo microvanesLynden Air Cargo’s fleet of L382G aircraft now include fuel-efficient Microvanes that allow for energy savings as well as increased speed. Engineered by Lockheed and licensed to Metro Aerospace, the Microvanes are small aerodynamic components that are surface mounted to the aft fuselage, effectively reshaping the air flow around the cargo door and tail. They reduce total drag on the aircraft while reducing fuel and thrust requirements. The Microvanes are expected to result in fuel savings of up to 4 percent (up to 34,000 gallons of fuel saved per aircraft per year) depending on flight length on the Lynden fleet.

"This project supports our ongoing efforts to support Lynden’s overall green initiative," says Ethan Bradford, head of Technical Services for Lynden Air Cargo. "We assisted Metro Aerospace to acquire FAA approval for installation and now we have the first set of Microvanes installed on N405LC. We hope to install them on the remaining fleet by the end of 2019."

The first long-range mission to prove the effectiveness of the Microvanes was to Antarctica via Christchurch, New Zealand, to support an Italian research group. The Microvanes provide a margin of safety for these long flights.

Tags: Lynden Air Cargo, Green Lynden, Charters, Air

Lynden Picnic 2018

Posted on Thu, Oct 25, 2018

Lynden Picnic CollageLooking back to when sunny skies drew approximately 1,000 employees and friends to the annual Lynden Picnic this past summer. Barbecued salmon was on the menu, as usual, plus 1,000 ears of sweet corn that arrived the day before from Kallstrom Farms in Ephrata, WA. According to Sandy Hartman of LTI, Inc., drivers and office staff shucked corn for most of Friday afternoon to prepare for the big day on Saturday. "The water slides and toys were a big hit this year," Sandy says. "At 4 p.m., when the games had to come down it was hard to tell the wee ones it was over." Lillybug face painting and henna tattoos were also popular along with wagon rides, the money pit, music and more. We had a great time at this family event!

Tags: Lynden, Green Lynden, Lynden Employees, Community

Lynden's Green Initiative celebrates 10 years

Posted on Thu, Sep 20, 2018

electronic-forklift-driver"Lynden's Green Initiative grew out of a depression era distaste for waste and a common sense desire to do what's right," says Coordinator Anna Deal. "Now, 10 years later, I am truly amazed at what we have accomplished together." The 10-year mark coincides with Lynden being named one of the top 75 Green Supply Chain partners for 2018 by Inbound Logistics magazine. It is Lynden's eighth award.

"Lynden's operating companies have continued to invest in modern high efficiency equipment to increase payload and reduce idle time, work with drivers to improve driving habits, and to look for innovative ways to improve freight operations. These efforts have paid off with the steady and measurable improvement in our freight efficiency and reduced emissions," Anna explains. "We are doing more with less at all levels."

Anna shared the additional Green Initiative accomplishments throughout the companies:

  • Our new facilities are designed to be energy efficient and we continue to upgrade lighting and heating systems across companies. We have invested in over 60 separate energy efficiency projects which have saved nearly 1,900 metric tons of CO2, 3,535 MWh of electricity, and 4,430 MMbtu of natural gas annually.
  • We have replaced our highest use propane forklifts with electric lifts leading to a 32% reduction in Lynden's small lift emissions.
  • We have initiated recycling programs at each of the Lynden locations and, along with our Alaskans for Litter Prevention and Recycling (ALPAR) partners, backhaul recyclables free of charge from Alaskan communities to Seattle for recycling.
  • Computer power saving software that automatically puts computers to "sleep" when not in use has reduced those energy costs by 20 percent.
  • Lynden's Green and Fit Challenge rewards employees for alternative transportation in their work commute and fitness activities. 

"Although we have accomplished a great deal, we know there is more we can do," Anna says. "We recently encouraged all employees to provide feedback and ideas so we can keep the momentum going that we started 10 years ago. The Green Initiative was, and is, a company-wide effort. Our accomplishments are the results of the hard work, talent and passion of Lynden's highly dedicated employees."

Tags: Lynden, Awards, Green Lynden

Alaska Governor honors Lynden Air Cargo with North Star Award

Posted on Mon, Feb 05, 2018

Hurricane response - LAC with sandbags on tarmac.jpgLynden Air Cargo received the Governor’s North Star Award for its long history of assisting in humanitarian relief and environmental disasters worldwide. The 2017 North Star Awards were announced this week by Gov. Bill Walker in Juneau. Lynden Air Cargo was recognized in the Transportation and Humanitarian Exchange categories and was one of only four companies to receive the honor. For more than 30 years, the Governor's North Star Awards for International Excellence have recognized Alaskan companies and organizations engaged in successful international business and activities.

“We are honored to receive this prestigious award which we share with our employees and the Lynden family of companies,” said Rick Zerkel, Lynden Air Cargo President. “All of our employees – in the air and on the ground – pride themselves on providing safe and reliable service while opening new international markets and opportunities to Alaska. We are also proud of our service in assisting victims of natural disasters and our environmental cleanup response. Wherever Lynden Air Cargo flies, it proudly represents Lynden, but also its home state of Alaska.”
 
Lynden pioneered service to Alaska in 1954 and today serves customers in every sector of the Alaska economy, including energy, mining, seafood, retail, military and government. Lynden Air Cargo’s fleet of L-382 Hercules aircraft transport everything from groceries to cars within Alaska through weekly scheduled flights and oversized cargo worldwide through charter flights. Its Hercules aircraft have responded to fires, earthquakes in Haiti, supported a peacekeeping mission in the African Congo and, most recently, mobilized relief flights to help those affected by Hurricanes Irma, Jose, and Maria in the Caribbean. Flight crews worked in situations where there was little information about airport conditions and contaminated fuel supplies.

“Since 1986, these awards have honored Alaskan companies that engage in successful international business and activities, and this year’s honorees should be proud of the role they play in connecting our state to the rest of the world,” said Governor Walker. “This diverse group of organizations is emblematic of the spirit of the North Star Awards.”

The 2017 North Star honorees include:  
•    Chena Hot Springs Resort (Tourism)
•    Hecla Greens Creek Mine (Trade, Export of Goods)
•    Lynden Air Cargo (Transportation, Humanitarian Exchange)
•    U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Alaska (Trade, Import of Goods and People)

Tags: Awards, Lynden Air Cargo, Green Lynden, Disaster Relief

Brown Line earns prestigious EPA SmartWay High Performer Status

Posted on Thu, Dec 14, 2017

Tulip field (red) with Brown Line truck.jpgBrown Line, LLC, an industry leader in temperature-controlled truck transport, earned a SmartWay Transport Partner 'High Performer' Status ranking from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) this month. Among the hundreds of fleets partnering with the EPA through SmartWay, Brown Line is among the select few that have earned SmartWay High Performer status for all performance metrics. 

According to the SmartWay Transport Partnership, just over 2 percent of all SmartWay carriers operate fleets so clean and efficient that they make the High Performer list. "These companies are a step ahead in meeting the challenges of sustainable goods movement and have achieved significant shipping and freight efficiencies that merit special attention," says Gina McCarthy, EPA Administrator. "Compared to their SmartWay peers, High Performer carriers drive cleaner, emit fewer pollutants and burn less fuel for every mile they travel and for every ton of freight they move."

Over the past seven years, Brown Line has decreased its idle hours by 87 percent, its Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) emissions by 43 percent, its Particulate Matter emissions (PM) by 52 percent and its Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions per ton mile by 27 percent. The company has also improved its mile per gallon (MPG) by 44 percent. "The Brown Line team is extremely proud of this award and this recognition. To be in the top 2 percent of all trucking companies is affirmation that our efforts to improve freight efficiency are paying off," says Brown Line President Bill Johansen. "We will continue to adopt programs and practices that improve productivity and reduce our carbon footprint on the road and in our operations."

Brown Line uses highly efficient engines, lightweight equipment with enhanced aerodynamics, automatic tire inflation systems and onboard computers to manage highway speed, progressive shifting, best routing options and idle times. Other efficiency measures include:

  • Cab design, with roof fairing, side skirts, integrated sleeper, and aerodynamic mirrors and bumper, reduces drag. Ultra-lightweight 53' trailers use side skirts and trailer tails.
  • Fleet includes 53-foot trailers with California Air Resources Board (CARB) compliant reefer units.
  • Team drivers and new high-efficiency plug-in electric refrigerated trailers minimize the need to idle the truck's engine. All reefers are electric.
  • Efficient engines – DT-12 Transmission Program, Carb Emission Certification-Clean Idle.
  • Gearing – DT-12, heavy duty 12-speed overdrive automated manual transmission increases miles per gallon.
  • All trucks and trailers use wide-base, low-rolling resistant single tires and have an automatic system to keep tires properly inflated for optimum fuel economy and to reduce tire wear.
  • PeopleNet tool is used to measure engine/driver performance in decreasing idle time and increasing miles per gallon with an average of 7.6 MPG for the entire fleet and an overall reduction in fuel use.  
  • Event Recorders are installed in all tractors to ensure improved safety and reduce cost.

Brown Line became a SmartWay Transportation Partner in 2010. Sister company Lynden Transport became the first Alaska trucking company to join SmartWay in 2008, followed by LTI, Inc./Milky Way – a three-time winner of SmartWay's Excellence Award – and Alaska West Express in 2012.  

The EPA launched SmartWay in 2004 to help businesses improve the sustainability of their freight supply chains. Today, the partnership consists of 3,000 companies representing a cross section of the freight supply chain.

Brown Line is one of the Lynden family of companies whose combined capabilities include: shipping to Alaska, truckload and less-than-truckload transportation, barge service to Hawaii and Alaska, charter barges, worldwide air and ocean forwarding, third-party logistics, trade show shipping, intermodal bulk chemical hauls, scheduled and chartered Hercules L-382 cargo aircraft and multi-modal logistics. Lynden companies are repeat winners in the annual Quest for Quality customer service awards presented by Logistics Management magazine.

Tags: Awards, Green Lynden, Seafood, Brown Line, Grocery Chill and Frozen, LTL, Temperature-Controlled, Truckload, Ground

New tractors for LTI, Inc. and Milky Way drivers

Posted on Tue, Oct 03, 2017

LTI, Inc./Milky Way drivers are rolling down the road in new tractors this fall, the result of a large-scale major equipment acquisition. According to Dave Seaman, Director of Equipment and Maintenance, LTI invested in new power units this year which replaced some of the high-mileage tractors. "The new equipment is allowing us to lower our operating cost by LTI new equipment - Gene Stahl.jpgreducing maintenance and improving fuel economy while maintaining payload," he explains. "The new units also provide a much better driving experience for our employees." LTI, Inc. has purchased 74 2018 Kenworth T680 tractors, the same tractor that Lynden Transport Driver John Schank drove across the country to deliver the Capitol Christmas Tree in 2015.

As of early September, 16 new tractors were in service with another 58 to be delivered this fall. The allocation of new equipment is based on demand, according to Dave. "We relocate power units between terminals in an effort to improve utilization and customer service. Since our power units are each assigned to a terminal and activity, we basically do a direct replacement," he says.

LTI, Inc. Equipment Maintenance Manager Jerry Crisp in Sunnyside and the team at Kenworth Northwest in Yakima work together on new equipment "UPFIT" which includes installation of the milk pump box, Peoplenet system, Lynden green vinyl wrap/door decal and equipment numbers, etc. Jerry and his maintenance team, along with Jeff Harris of Sunnyside operations, test run each tractor prior to delivery to LTI, Inc. Service Centers. "Our goal is delivering each tractor ready to work," Dave explains. "This is a major task for all of LTI, Inc., including administration, operations, HSSE, maintenance and specifically the Sunnyside maintenance/operations teams as they continue with day to day operations and the beginning of our harvest season. They get this done while maintaining excellent customer service." Utilization is considered along with a life cycle target of 800,000 miles, although some units run close to 1 million miles prior to replacement. "Today's engines and emissions systems are very expensive to repair and replace so at LTI, Inc., we really don't want to overhaul engines nor replace emissions systems during the life cycle unless absolutely necessary," Jerry explains.

The allocation of LTI/Milky Way's used tractors is also carefully considered. "Our first priority is making sure we have a One Lynden approach regarding the disposal of an asset," Dave says. "Recently we have supported Alaska Marine Lines, Alaska Marine Trucking and Lynden Transport by transferring used tractors to each operation. We also sell direct, through a broker or auctions and we sometimes consider dealer trade-in values."

Milky Way Drivers like Gene Staal of Lynden, WA and Anthony Platas-Tremont of Moses Lake, WA are enjoying the new equipment. "The truck is very comfortable, rides smooth and quiet and has great visibility," Gene says. "This is a quality truck to match Milky Way's quality standards," Anthony adds. "There has been a noticeable mileage increase on my normal route."

Tags: LTI Inc., Green Lynden, Milky Way, Drivers

Keeping its green streak going

Posted on Tue, Aug 29, 2017

G75 2017 logo.jpgKeeping its green streak going, Lynden was once again named a 2017 G75 Supply Chain Partner by Inbound Logistics magazine. Companies are chosen for the top 75 list based on four benchmarks: Measurable green results, sustainability innovation, continuous improvement and industry recognition.

Tags: Lynden, Awards, Green Lynden

Lynden companies get a Green Star

Posted on Tue, Aug 22, 2017

Green Star window shot - AMT Juneau-copy.jpgAlaska Marine Trucking was the first business in Juneau to qualify for the Green Star recognition award for environmental responsibility in 2011 and was recertified for 2017. Alaska’s Green Star Program supports businesses and organizations that practice waste reduction, energy conservation and pollution prevention through education, technical assistance and an award-winning voluntary ‘green business’ certification program. Lynden Transport in Anchorage was the first trucking company in Alaska to earn certification in 2008 later joined by Fairbanks and Soldotna locations. Alaska Marine Lines in Cordova and Alaska West Express, Lynden Air Cargo, Lynden Logistics and Lynden Incorporated in Anchorage are now certified as well.

Tags: Lynden, Awards, Green Lynden