Greener trucks on our roads?

Australian roads will be a greener place thanks to new emission regulations for trucks that come into force on Friday February 29.

The environment will benefit greatly from the new emission regulations for diesel trucks, which will dramatically reduce harmful gases flowing from the exhausts of new trucks.

The new Australian Design Rule 80/02 requires all new trucks coming onto our roads to reduce particulate matter by up to 98 percent, while dangerous Nitrous Oxide (NOx) emissions will be cut by 30 percent. Particulate matter is the soot emitted from a truck’s exhaust.

The Truck Industry Council (TIC), the peak body representing truck manufacturers in Australia, welcomed the new rules and says the industry is already preparing for the next phase of emission reductions due in 2011.

According to Tony McMullan, chief executive of TIC, manufacturers have introduced the latest technology to meet the stringent new regulations, which are an important step forward in the quest to reduce gas emissions without affecting the efficiency or cost effectiveness of road transport.

"Trucks of all shapes and sizes have helped drive our economic growth in Australia over the past decade and have been a vital cog in the wheels of productivity," said Mr McMullan.

"The freight task, particularly in Australia’s capital cities, is growing rapidly and modeling suggests freight in Australia’s cities will increase by 80 percent by 2020," he added.

"As well, interstate road freight is growing faster than other modes and Australia’s huge land mass and dispersed population means that trucks here cover more kilometres and carry more freight per capita than any other road transport industry in the world," he said.

"This will mean greener trucks will be absolutely vital and the industry is meeting that challenge," said Mr. McMullan.

Australia’s truck fleet travels more than 13 billion kilometres and transports some 1.7 billion tonnes of freight per year.

Trucks provide nearly all urban freight transport and road is the only mode available in many country areas.

"Australia is one of the leaders in regulations demanding greener, more environmentally friendly vehicles and all of TIC’s member manufacturers endorse this philosophy," said Mr McMullan.


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