Fleets Use Tank Insights to Conserve Fuel, Reduce 88,566 tons of Carbon Annually
By Carolina Ruiz • Published March 23, 2022 • 5 minute read
Strategies that increase fuel efficiency are not only good for the environment but also sustain the bottom line. With average diesel prices above $5.00 per gallon, even small improvements have significant paybacks.
Petroleum and chemical distributors that use advanced remote tank monitoring systems can significantly reduce fuel usage by automatically planning efficient customer delivery routes that minimize mileage and labor costs while boosting customer service.
Better Routes Save Fuel
Petroleum and chemical distributors have several levers they can pull to reduce fuel consumption and minimize their carbon footprints.
Those levers are closely tracked by the Environmental Protection Agency by monitoring the data submitted voluntarily by fleets that participate in the SmartWay program. The agency estimates that medium- and heavy-duty trucks are responsible for 23% of the total greenhouse gas emissions that come from all vehicles.
By monitoring the results of carrier participants, the EPA has identified three ways fleet operators can shrink their carbon footprints:
- Use Cleaner Fuels: Most trucks on the highways still use diesel fuel. At $5.00 per gallon, distributors can utilize cost-competitive alternative fuels such as natural gas, biodiesel and renewable diesel that significantly reduce carbon and nitrogen oxide (NOx). Battery-powered vehicles are another option.
- Burn Less: Fleets can use new vehicle designs and advanced technologies to monitor equipment and drivers to improve fuel performance.
- Drive Fewer Miles: Technology can help fleets reduce fuel consumption by driving fewer miles. By using remote tank monitoring systems, fleets have the information they need to plan more efficient delivery routes to save time, mileage and fuel.
Fleets burn 8.7 million fewer gallons with tank monitoring
Distributors have installed SkyBitz tank monitoring solutions in more than 180,000 chemical, fuel, lubricant, and propane tanks. The SkyBitz SmartTank wireless sensors transmit tank levels, inventory usage and other telemetry information to the SmartTank Dispatch portal, which gives distributors a full menu of information to optimize the planning process to deliver more gallons with fewer stops.
The current industry average for delivery efficiency is 45% when companies have un-monitored tanks and non-forecasted inventory usage data. In other words, distributors are filling tanks on delivery routes when the tanks are only 45% empty.
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SkyBitz customer data shows that distributors who use the SkyBitz SmartTank solution increase delivery efficiency to more than 75%, on average, by having real-time visibility of tank levels and accurate forecasting. Distributors can deliver more gallons per stop while mitigating the risks of run outs and emergency deliveries.
Simulating the results in terms of fuel savings and emissions reduction for a delivery vehicle with a 500-gallon tank on routes with a 40% versus 75% efficiency shows the following:
40% Efficiency 75% Efficiency
Gallons Delivered: 200 Gallons Delivered: 375
Cost per Gallon: $0.38 Cost per Gallon: $0.20
Miles Driven: 100 Miles Driven: 65
- A reduction of 35 miles per route saves approximately 5.4 gallons per truck based on an average of 6.45 mpg.
Tank monitoring systems eliminate delivery planning errors and guesswork to remove unnecessary stops and reduce mileage. Distributors use the technology to automate and optimize workflows in order generation, dispatching and routing.
Overall, customer data from 800 petroleum and chemical distributors that use SkyBitz tank monitoring solutions show:
- An average fleet size of 30 trucks.
- 5 fewer deliveries per daily route and an average reduction of 7.5 miles per route.
- A total reduction of 56.1 million miles annually. This equates to 7 million fewer gallons of diesel fuel used, saving 88,566 metric tons of CO2 emissions.
Making the most of Tank Monitoring
Besides reducing fuel consumption and emissions, distributors that use remote tank monitoring solutions can increase revenue and profits. Distributors can maximize the volume (fill rate) for each order and decrease the frequency of customer visits to increase delivery margins.
The SmartTank Dispatch portal utilizes real-time SmartTank telemetry data and forecasting algorithms to automate order generation, optimize delivery planning, and streamline the route delivery workflow for all will-call and keep-full orders.
With a fast and responsive user experience, distributors can drive workflow automation to increase productivity throughout the organization, as well as improve customer service and maximize route density in their service networks.
Environmental sustainability is an ongoing concern for petroleum and chemical distributors, but any strategy for reducing your carbon footprint must also make business and financial sense. Taking advantage of fuel savings and revenue growth opportunities from remote tank monitoring telematics can deliver environmental and financial paybacks, making the technology a smart, all-around sustainable investment.
Contact SkyBitz today to save fuel, reduce emissions and eliminate guesswork to proactively manage tank inventories, customer service and profitability.