On Sunday, October 15, operators of more than eight million diesel-powered trucks and buses in the U.S. will be able to fill up with a new, Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel Fuel (ULSD)that is 97 percent cleaner than the old formulation it replaces.
Cleaner diesel fuel will immediately cut soot emissions from any diesel vehicle by 10 percent. But when combined with a new generation of engines hitting the road in January, it will enable emission reductions of up to 95 percent, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the Diesel Technology Forum (DTF).
Diesel trucks move 94 percent of the nation's goods -- more than 18 million tons of freight each day. Half a million diesel buses take 14 million people to work and school. The new fuel opens the door for auto companies to begin offering cleaner diesel cars that deliver greater fuel economy.
A new 2007 diesel truck will emit just one-sixtieth the soot exhaust of one produced in 1988. And thanks to the new fuel, owners of existing diesel vehicles will have the option to install new emission controls that can reduce soot emissions by more than 90 percent.
Beginning on January 1st, 2007, new trucks' engines will have state-of-the-art emissions filters in place so technologically advanced that they will only be able to run on the new clean fuel. The new filters will capture and eliminate harmful emissions. The clean fuel, coupled with the new filters on every new truck, will work in concert to ensure that all new diesel rigs pass the "white handkerchief test," eliminating 98 percent of emissions and any hint of the smoke associated with diesels of the past.