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Digging out of the Petroleum Hole

We all know what it’s like to be stuck in a hole, unable to think our way out of a problem.

Caterpillar Inc., known worldwide as a manufacturer of machinery and engines, has found an alternative-fuel solution that benefits all of us with a little help from the California Energy Commission in partnership with CALSTART. Its 36-ton hydraulic hybrid excavator, 336-EH, moves dirt, rocks, and you name it with plenty of power. Because the excavator uses a hydraulic hybrid power source to recover wasted energy, it reduces reliance on fossil fuels, like diesel.

With a $2.5 million grant through the Energy Commission’s Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program and its own private match funding, Caterpillar has ramped up commercial manufacturing of this off-road vehicle, saving up to 25 percent of greenhouse gas emissions compared with conventional diesel models. It has the potential to reduce 5,000 gallons of diesel and 67 tons of greenhouse gas emissions annually for each hybrid excavator. That’s helping California reach its goal of slowing the pace of global warming that could threaten our existence.

Alternative fuels can help businesses get a better handle on their equipment fuel costs by offering more stable prices than the ups and downs of fossil fuels. Watch this video from Strack, Inc.

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California Energy Commission

The California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency created by the Legislature in 1974.
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