Improving America’s Infrastructure with the Most Advanced and Cleanest Equipment

May 25, 2017
Hundreds of organizations honored the past accomplishments and focused on the future growth of America’s national infrastructure during Infrastructure Week (May 15-19).

Hundreds of organizations honored the past accomplishments and focused on the future growth of America’s national infrastructure during Infrastructure Week (May 15-19). With diesel equipment serving as the overwhelming power source for past and future infrastructure growth, Diesel Technology Forum Executive Director Allen Schaeffer issued the following statement about the importance of new diesel engines and equipment in construction and that off-road equipment is now cleaner and more efficient than ever before.

Diesel Powers over 90 percent of Machines & Equipment for Building & Repairing Infrastructure

“Infrastructure is the back bone of the U.S. economy and our global competitiveness, and it’s vital we start reinvesting in its future.  It’s been over 40 years since most portions of the Interstate Highways System were completed. Since then the materials and methods for safe road building and design have advanced by leaps and bounds.  And so have the machines that do the work.

“Diesel engines are the workhorse of all infrastructure projects. Over two thirds of all construction machines are powered by diesel and nearly all the largest equipment has diesel as the technology of choice. Whether we’re talking about moving massive amounts of dirt, milling pavement, pouring concrete, trenching for cables, or laying pipe for new clean water systems, or massive cranes used for building bridges, the jobs all come back to diesel power.

“Thanks to innovation in engine technology and emissions control systems, the end result is that these technologies enable infrastructure projects to be built faster, using less fuel, and generating a fraction of the emissions from even a decade ago. These advances will especially be important to the people living and working in the communities around these job sites.

Emissions from New Clean Diesel Equipment Have Been Reduced to Near Zero Levels

“One of the biggest advancements comes from the new generation of construction machines and equipment that do the work. Emissions from mission-critical new clean diesel equipment have now been reduced to near zero levels which is providing major environmental benefits throughout the country. From bulldozers, to excavators and motor graders, the latest generation, or “Tier 4”, engines reflect the most advanced emissions standards for off-road equipment established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for equipment manufactured since 2014. 

“Depending on the horsepower range of the machine, emissions of particulate matter (soot) and oxides of nitrogen (NOx) have all been reduced by more than 90 percent.

“Manufacturers have taken efficiency, fuel savings and lower emissions well beyond the design of the engine to include efficiency improvement in the overall machine. Advanced engine designs, hybrid capabilities in some machines along with energy storage technologies, and even advanced telematics systems, GPS and integrated work site control systems are now deployed in new equipment and combine to yield substantial fuel savings and emission reductions.

“The adoption of ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel in 2010 set in motion the path to clean diesel technology, for off-road equipment. Increasingly in the future the use of advanced biodiesel and renewable diesel fuels will provide additional options for lowering emissions and reducing carbon footprints.”