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Start Saving the Environment

Driving Emissions Down

The subject of air pollution is in the news all the time these days, with cities around the world suffering from smog on an epic scale. Air pollution isn’t just unsightly – it’s a major health concern. The World Health Organization estimates that 7 million people die each year due to polluted air, which causes respiratory illnesses. Most of these people live in cities, and while transportation isn’t the only source of pollution, it’s a significant one – and it’s one that Lightning Hybrids can help your fleet address with our ERS hydraulic hybrid.

The three top atmospheric pollutants generated by gasoline and diesel vehicles are:

  • CO2 – carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas
  • NOX – a family of nitrogen oxides, which cause urban smog (see the picture below)
  • Particulate Matter (PM) – extremely small air-borne particles of soot and other materials, which can damage lungs

How does the ERS Reduce Emissions?

CO2 iconThe amount of CO2 emitted by a vehicle is more or less determined by how much fuel is burnt in the engine. Therefore, a technology which reduces fuel use will also reduce CO2 emissions. The ERS uses regenerative braking technology to reduce the amount of fuel consumed, and so the CO2 emissions will decrease too.

NOx icon

NOX is typically emitted most heavily when an engine is working hard, i.e. under load. Accelerating a heavy vehicle is an example of this. The ERS uses stored braking energy to accelerate the vehicle, which takes the load off the engine and significantly reduces the emissions of NOX.

PM iconPM, in the form of soot, is well-controlled in modern vehicles in Western nations. Particulate filters on diesel trucks capture pretty much all of it, so it’s less of a problem than it used to be. However, in developing nations, such as India and African countries, dirty diesel trucks are the norm, with large amounts of unfiltered PM polluting the air that the citizens breathe. Diesels typically generate most soot when accelerating, and since the ERS uses stored braking energy to accelerate the vehicle, the engine doesn’t have to work so hard, and the puff of soot is mostly avoided.

In addition, the tailpipe isn’t the only source of particulate matter: brake dust is a significant – and toxic – form of PM too. The ERS reduces this emission significantly by saving the vehicle’s brakes.

Finally, the ERS is environmentally friendly when it’s time to scrap it after a long life on the road. Unlike the advanced batteries found in electric vehicles and electric hybrids, for which there is no environmentally-friendly method of disposal, the aluminum used in our accumulators can easily be recycled.

Good for the Environment – Good for Regulations

We all share a responsibility to preserve our environment, and the ERS is a tool for fleet managers to do just that. And with increasing regulations and restrictions, now is a great time to invest in clean transportation technology. Start saving the environment!

Contact us to learn more.

Blog Articles on Emissions and the Environment

> Particulate Matter: Not Just from the Tailpipe

> Why we should count emissions reductions in ROI considerations

> Are Governments Picking the Winners?

> Understanding Smog

> China’s Electric Bus Strategy Sours

NOX and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) react in sunlight to produce ozone, which is a harmful component of smog:

Ozone graphic - how NOx generates smog