- David Steiner, president and CEO of Waste Management Inc., told Bloomberg Television's Matt Miller on Market Makers that the company is committed to using natural gas; currently 4,200 trucks in its fleet run on CNG. "25% of our fleet runs on natural gas," Steiner said. "About 90% of what we buy runs on natural gas."
- "For us it's twofold," Steiner said. "It's what do our customers want? Our customers want a greener solution and so it's absolutely a greener solution. And then what's good for the business? With the (price) difference between diesel and natural gas, it makes financial sense. And so when you do something that makes financial sense for the company and makes good sense for the environment, that's what we like to do at Waste Management."
- Steiner points out that infrastructure is vital to increasing the use of natural gas fleets. "When you look at the over-the-road trucks, you have to stop and get gas along the interstate highway system and they don't have the infrastructure." He believes governments should provide incentives to build CNG filling stations. "Then you will see everyone turn to natural gas because, from a heavy-duty fleet point of view, it makes great economic sense." He noted that over-the-road trucks can use liquefied natural gas (LNG), short-haul heavy-duty trucks like waste trucks can use compressed natural gas (CNG), and passenger vehicles and light trucks can run on electricity.
Waste Management is walking the talk on natural gas vehicles and infrastructure. The company built a natural gas filling station by Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. "Seattle taxicabs run on natural gas," Steiner said. "So every time the taxicab goes out to the airport, they have the ability to stop by our station and fill up their taxi with natural gas."
The waste industry as a whole is a leader in the switch to CNG vehicles. While workers enjoy the trucks better because they are quieter and provide a smoother ride, fuel costs are the main factor driving purchases.