East Windsor, Conn.-based USA Hauling and Recycling Inc., with contractors Clean Energy Fuels Corp. and Earthlight Solar, welcomed community leaders to celebrate the completion of a multiyear project to add solar panels to its compressed natural gas (CNG) station that helps support more than 100 CNG refuse trucks in the region.
The Shoham Road station in East Windsor is utilizing multiple forms of clean, sustainable and cost-effective energy combining CNG from Clean Energy with solar panels from Earthlight Solar.
“This project aligns with USA Hauling and Recycling’s vision to adopt environmentally friendly practices and further our sustainability goals,” said Frank M. Antonacci, the company’s chief operating officer, in a statement. “With support from Clean Energy and Earthlight, we are able to provide a public access station that will raise the bar for the industry and make it convenient for other local fleets to convert from diesel to CNG.”
Trucks powered by natural gas reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 16 percent compared to diesel trucks, noted the company, adding that one CNG truck produces a tenth of the nitrogen oxide (NOx) as a diesel truck.
The 742.6-kilowatt system installed by Earthlight Solar is made up of 1,689 solar panels and is expected to produce renewable energy for the next 40 years. The carbon emissions eliminated by switching to solar is equal to 608,024 pounds of coal or 1,288 barrels of oil.
“Natural gas as a transportation fuel is the best solution to deliver emission reductions associated with diesel fuel from our highways, roads and communities,” said Chad Lindholm, vice president of Clean Energy, in a statement. “We applaud our partner USA Hauling and Recycling for its commitment to this project and for taking the lead to expand the use of natural gas in the region.”
“Taking renewables to another level by using solar PV to power clean burning CNG trucks, that in turn go out and collect recyclables, is an incredible feat,” said Timothy Schneider, CEO of Earthlight Technologies, in a statement. “Earthlight wants to thank USA Hauling and Recycling for allowing us to build the solar for this great project.”
This is the third CNG station that USA Hauling and Recycling has opened in the state and first in the country being powered by solar, with other locations in Hartford, New Haven and a fourth CNG station being built in Watertown.