The 2012 Green Fleet Conference, held in Schaumburg, Ill., was the biggest and most well-attended yet. And, it helped to prove that just because a fleet operates trucks, it can still easily be green and save green.
After feedback from attendees, conference organizers decided to add a truck track, and the response was phenomenal. Sessions had standing room only and questions from the audience made it clear that attendees were paying attention and wanted to learn more.
There was even a live CNG conversion by GO Natural CNG that took place right on the show floor during the exhibit hall.
Add to the sessions a ride-and-drive including truck manufacturers such as Ford, Hino, GM; and upfitters/converters including Reading Body, VIA Motors, Venchurs, IMPCO, ROUSH CleanTech, and more, fleet managers researching greener truck options had plenty to choose from. As one attendee walking past me to his next test-drive put it, "I feel like a kid in a candy store."
(Click photo below to scroll through additional images and vehicle shots).
Bob Johnson of the NTEA - the Association for the Work Truck Industry, presented a compelling look at defining the differences between drive and duty cycles, and why that matters.
Tom Berg of HDT magazine led OEMs from Ford, Kenworth, Hino Trucks, Navistar, Chrysler, and Freightliner in a discussion on what strategies and technologies are being employed by major OEMs to reduce emissions and make product offerings more "green."
Linda Gaines of the Argonne National Laboratory, Tom Pelletier of Naperville Community School District, and Matthre Stewart of the City of Chicago, discussed idle-reduction strategies and alternatives that don't reduce the functionality of a vehicle. The two fleet managers shared their real-life experiences and methods.
A larger panel, which included Lorrie Lisek, Wisconsin Clean Cities - Southeast Area; Jon Coleman, Ford Motor Company; Rick Longobart, City of Santa Ana, CA; Eric Paul, BrandFX Body Company; Chris Ransom, Networkfleet, Inc.; and Van Teeple, Michelin Americas Research Company engaged in a lively discussion on decreasing emissions with non-powertrain solutions.
And, a surprise guest moderated the final truck session, Deborah Lockridge of HDT magazine led a panel on the latest trends in internal combustion engine efficiency, which included Garth Cole, Johnson Controls; Jon Coleman, Ford Motor Company; Greg Glander, Toyota Motor Sales; Joyce Mattman, GM Fleet and Commercial Operations; Douglas Skorupski, Volkswagen Group of America; and Mike Stoller, Honeywell Transportation Systems.
There was a concurrent commercial fleet and government fleet track at the conference as well. If you didn't get a chance to come out this year, check out the coverage on Green Fleet's website, and let us know what sessions you might want to see next year!
To all of the panelists, attendees, and exhibitors, thank you for making the 2012 Green Fleet Conference the year to beat!
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