Wrightspeed and The Ratto Group unveiled The Route, the first commercial application of a range-extended electric refuse truck, at a press conference in Sonoma County, Calif., yesterday. With The Route and backing of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors, communities throughout Sonoma County and neighboring counties will be serviced by a clean and quiet fleet of trucks.
“[The unveiling] is a milestone for Sonoma County in terms of improving local air quality and upholding environmental standards,” said Sonoma County Chairman of the Board Efren Carrillo in a press release. “As a government entity, we have led with innovative programs to reduce greenhouse gases, such as the Sonoma County Energy Independence Program, Sonoma Clean Power and Evergreen, a nationally recognized Green Fleet, the Water Agency’s Carbon Free Water program and our Regional Climate Protection Authority. Sonoma County citizens have shown their high interest and support for innovative solutions that benefit our greenhouse gas reduction goals. We applaud Wrightspeed and The Ratto Group for their commitment to innovation and for blazing a path for the future of solid and compostable waste, as well as recycling in Sonoma County and beyond.”
The Route, which has been recognized by the State of California for its ability to help meet progressive climate and air-quality mandates, is designed to deliver economic, environmental and performance benefits in both OEM-installed new vehicles and existing fleet retrofits.
“As an early adopter of our powertrain technology, Lou Ratto has solidified Sonoma County as a leader in pioneering new technologies that will improve and preserve the region for future generations,” said Wrightspeed Founder and CEO Ian Wright in a press release. “We’re proud to collaborate with Lou and his team and to establish our powertrain technology as the economical and environmental choice for cleaner, quieter and more efficient communities.
Currently, Ratto’s fleet of refuse, recycling and compostable yard waste trucks services more than 140,000 customers throughout Sonoma County, Mariposa County, the City of Novato and West Marlin. And to meet community needs, Ratto and Wrightspeed are rolling out more than 15 Route trucks over the next 12 months.
“In a business that puts a premium on reuse, this represents the ultimate in recycling. We’re literally recycling the recycling truck,” said The Ratto Group Chief Operating Officer Lou Ratto in a press release. “By integrating Wrightspeed’s powertrains into our existing commercial fleet, we’re initiating a progressive solid waste and recyclables collection strategy that will maximize the life of our vehicles, cut fuel consumption and emissions and have a positive environmental impact on our service areas.”
Additionally, Wrightspeed was awarded $7 million in grants by the California Energy Commission to further develop technology for broad-based adaption of The Route.