I scream, you scream, we all scream – for higher fuel emission standardsJostein Solheim
We all know how good a cold ice cream tastes on a hot day, and climate scientists are telling us to expect more hot days – and extended heat waves – in the years ahead. As the planet gets warmer, we at Ben & Jerry’s want to be sure that our ice cream is produced with as few greenhouse gas emissions as possible, to keep our fans supplied with Cherry Garcia without making climate change even worse.
We’ve done our homework and know that 17% of our carbon footprint comes from transportation, from shipping our ice cream from the factory to our distribution centers. That’s a big bite out of our carbon budget, and we’re not alone.
Heavy over-the-road trucks move 70% of America’s freight, yet these trucks average only six miles per gallon and emit over half a billion tons of greenhouse gas pollution per year. These trucks are the fastest-growing single source of carbon pollution in the US, and truck travel is projected to increase 40% by 2040.
To tackle this carbon pollution and costs, the Environmental Protection Agency has proposed federal regulations for the fuel economy of freight trucks. These proposed regulations are a step in the right direction, but they don’t lower emissions far enough or fast enough.
Stronger standards are needed. Experts say that a 40% reduction in fuel consumption by 2025 is not only feasible and cost effective, but would save businesses and consumers even more money and cut more pollution than the proposed standards, which don’t specify an overall figure.
Today’s trucks get our products to your local freezer at too high a cost, financially and environmentally. Together, US businesses spend $650 billion a year shipping goods in long-haul trucks. More efficient trucks may cost a little more upfront, but they will cost far less to run over the life of the truck, reducing freight rates by nearly 7%, which could drop costs by $0.21/mile by 2040.
They’d help us deliver our pints to your freezer more cheaply, and with less greenhouse gas pollution, than we are able to do today.
The Consumer Federation of America estimates that, each year, the average American household spends $1,100 extra on consumer goods and services to cover the costs of fueling up inefficient, heavy-duty trucks, and that stronger standards could save the average household $250 a year.
That’s good news for us, for trucking companies, for truckers – and for you.
Ben & Jerry’s is committed to reducing our carbon footprint across our entire business. From manure separators that reduce emissions on our dairy farms to installing solar panels at our factories in Vermont, we are proud to have already taken steps that are tackling the greatest sources of our emissions. Strong truck fuel standards will help us continue taking bites out of our carbon footprint.
While there will always be a few who continue to deny the scientific reality of climate change, we understand that solutions, like efficient truck standards, will help us take on global warming, reduce fuel costs and drive innovation.
We’re proud to stand with the many forward-thinking companies that understand strong fuel economy standards for trucks will lower freight costs and benefit everyone.