March 3, 2020. Houston-based Building Products Plus has taken another step toward running leaner and greener by switching their entire fleet of forklifts from diesel to compressed natural gas (CNG) forklifts.
Building Products Plus is what you might call ‘green already. Several years ago, they switched their entire delivery fleet, including semi’s and tilt-bed trucks, to all CNG-powered trucks. They supply SFI Certified© products, are an approved supplier and manufacturer of SFI Certified products© (both certifications guarantee a high degree of sustainable practices throughout a product’s entire chain of custody), and many of their products are selected and offered because of benefits including longevity and/or minimizing environmental impact. Being green is a consideration in everything they do from the products they sell to the ways they produce and deliver them.
The new CNG-powered Hyster forklifts with Kubota engines are simply ‘another step in the right direction, according to Founder and President, Dorian Benn.’ With one hand on a forklift, Benn continues, “We always seeking to improve, and part of that is running a cleaner operation overall. These forklifts operate much more cleanly, are powerful and reliable, and make sense, financially-speaking. It’s a win, win.”
Houston is on the EPA’s list of non-attainment zones because of poor air quality and diesel engines are the largest contributing factor. Natural gas is an alternative fuel option with very low emission. It is also economical and readily available.
EPA grants are available to help with the cost of switching out the old, dirty diesel machines with new CNG-powered machines. As an example, the grant provided to Building Products Plus offset their investment in the new fleet of natural gas forklifts by 57%. Their investment was still significant, but they have a fleet of new forklifts whose fuel cost is about half as much as diesel.
The CNG-powered forklifts are calculated to reduce Building Products Plus’s output of NOx by 3 tons per year roughly a 90% reduction in emissions compared to their old diesel forklifts.