Trucking Industry Trends: Schneider, NACFE Lead Fuel Efficiency Efforts

By Rob Reich Aug 3, 2017
Schneider Tractor-Trailer

Trucks play a vital role in our lives, delivering nearly 70 percent of all goods across the country. That’s a lot of miles driven — and a lot of fuel needed — to get products from point A to point B day in and day out. Recognizing the unique role trucks play, Schneider is committed to a culture of sustainability. We make it a priority to invest in environmentally friendly technologies and practices, and trucking industry trends that promote fuel efficiency.

One of the ways Schneider seeks ongoing sustainable improvement is through its work with the North American Council for Freight Efficiency (NACFE). NACFE’s mission is to find ways to double the efficiency of transporting goods by improving the quality of information transportation specialists receive and highlighting the successful adoption of technologies among fleets. For the past six years, Schneider has participated in NACFE’s annual Fleet Fuel Study, which learns about companies’ technology use and acceptance, and compares miles per gallon to the government average.

In addition, NACFE publishes individual reports, called Confidence Reports, that take an in-depth look at commercially available technologies, giving transportation providers the information they need to make informed decisions on behalf of their fleet. These reports on trucking industry trends are definitely valuable inputs for us when it comes to spec’ing equipment and making other equipment-related decisions.

Additionally, as Schneider’s senior vice president of equipment, maintenance and driver development, I’ve served on the NACFE board of directors since 2014. In this role, I contribute my industry expertise, and help define the council’s goals and priorities. This opportunity allows me to bring greater awareness to others about the importance of trucking efficiency, and how incorporating sustainable practices is easier than it may appear.

“NACFE relies on input and insight from key industry players like Schneider to help us determine which technologies to study and how to best share our findings with the trucking industry and other interested stakeholders,” says Mike Roeth, NACFE executive director.

At its most recent meeting held right here at Schneider, the NACFE board finalized plans for an exciting new initiative called Run on Less. Run on Less (which is supported in part through our NACFE sponsorship) is a first-of-its-kind cross-country road show that will demonstrate how Class 8 trucks can achieve the best possible fuel economy through sustainable technologies.

Seven Class 8 trucks will haul freight across the country for three weeks using a variety of current, commercially available and sustainable technologies, such as automated transmissions, low-rolling resistance tires and trailer skirts. These different technologies will demonstrate how to achieve the best possible fuel economy in today’s highway tractors and help establish trucking industry trends for years to come. Throughout the journey, driver progress, costs and carbon emissions saved will be tracked and reported in real time at runonless.com — be sure to follow along and see sustainability in action! (The comprehensive report will be compiled and released in November.)

Schneider and NACFE collaboration highlights:
  • Schneider Senior Vice President Rob Reich has served on the NACFE board of directors since 2014.
  • Schneider hosted the most recent NACFE board of directors meeting in Green Bay in July.

“We are excited about Run on Less because it will feature real trucks, hauling real freight on real world routes to demonstrate that by using a combination of technology and operational practices, it is possible to get more from a gallon of fuel,” Roeth says. “We hope to be able to show fleets that there are a variety of ways to get more miles from a gallon of fuel, and that they can choose technologies that best fit their needs.”

Run on Less will rev up from various locations across the country, downshifting to its final destination at the inaugural North American Commercial Vehicle (NACV) show in Atlanta on Sept. 24. During the show, the final results will be announced, and drivers will showcase their equipment and share their personal learnings and best practices for fuel economy. Also, technology manufacturers will be available throughout NACV to help attending fleets accelerate their adoption of technologies that make sustainable — and fiscal — sense for their operations.

Through our ongoing work with organizations like NACFE, implementation of energy-efficient technologies and annual environmental achievements and recognitions, Schneider has an eye for efficiency. That’s why for over 35 years Schneider has been dubbed a pioneer of sustainable shipping, making us a leader in green transportation. We’re always looking to be cleaner and greener, which means our eco-friendly focus will help make tomorrow’s shipping methods even better — and help our drivers to be the most efficient over the long haul.

Those are trucking industry trends we can all get behind.

Do you have any questions about Schneider’s culture of sustainability or NACFE’s industry efforts to improve fuel efficiency?


About the Author

Rob Reich IMG
Rob Reich is senior vice president of equipment, maintenance and driver recruiting at Schneider. Reich began his professional career with Schneider in 1992 and has since served in several leadership roles. Prior to joining Schneider, Reich served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Army. Reich served in Desert Storm and successfully led a 63-soldier signal platoon with no resulting casualties. Reich holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Pennsylvania State University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Wisconsin–Oshkosh. 

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