PLANO, TEXAS — Frito-Lay North America, a division of PepsiCo, Inc., is expanding on a commitment to alternative fuel and compressed natural gas (C.N.G.) with the opening of its first compressed natural gas fueling station in Beloit, Wis. In addition, there are plans for more such stations as well as for more C.N.G. tractors.
F.L.N.A plans to break ground on seven public C.N.G. fueling stations across the United States this year. Additionally, the company is planning to increase its C.N.G. fleet to a total of 208 C.N.G. tractors.
“This initiative to build much-needed natural gas infrastructure for large commercial vehicles is part of Frito-Lay’s deep commitment to the environment,” said Mike O’Connell, senior director for fleet operations with Frito-Lay. “When all 208 C.N.G. tractors are in service, Frito-Lay will eliminate 7,863 metric tons of carbon emissions, the equivalent of over 1,125 cars annually.”
The fueling stations will provide fuel for the tractors and make it possible for the company to use more C.N.G. vehicles. The seven new fueling stations, along with three others, will begin operations with an expected annual volume of two million gallons with this anticipated to grow to more than eight million gallons in five years. The stations are being built with the help of vendors Questar Fueling and Trillium C.N.G.
The C.N.G. vehicles are not the only way F.L.N.A. is working to make its fleet more fuel-efficient. In 2012, PepsiCo and F.L.N.A. announced a pilot program testing an electronic vehicle for F.L.N.A. At that time Frito-Lay committed to purchase five vehicles from Electronic Vehicles International. The vehicles have a 90-mile range, a top speed of 65 miles per hour and use a 99kWh lithium phosphate battery system made by Valence Technology. Also in 2012 the company said it would purchase 100 all-electric vehicles from Smith Electric Vehicles, which would make for more than 280 total electric vehicles in its fleet.
Overall, by 2020 Frito-Lay is looking to reduce its total fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions by 50% compared with levels in 2007.