Transition to a greener, carbon-free environment
Future of Transportation
Part 3 of 3
Encore and company transition to a greener, carbon free environment. Our thoughts, programs and plans on how to become a more responsible, corporate citizen and planetary resident. Part three of three.
As we look into the future of transportation, we are researching the electric or hybrid semi-tractor options, but at the moment there is nothing available, in reasonable terms, that could do our type of work; over the roads and distances, this massive province demands of our units. Our responsibilities can include lengthy drives, hours of site time., multiple picker and boom requirements, and another long journey home. There is nothing available that can accommodate ‘but’ the technology is getting closer. Volvo studies have concluded it would take a 20,000 lb battery to do what present day trucks do in a day. Useless.
Alternate fuels such as natural gas and hydrogen are still experimental and there is little to no infrastructure to support their use.
We are also following the driverless experiments, and once again the technology is not there yet. How incredible would it be for our drivers to be able to relax and let our units find their way home. We have one run, the shuttle; on a dedicated run, a main highway; that is a closer possibility for this technology. This more controlled application may eventually prove to be a candidate for the newer tech and alternate power units such as electric or fuel cell power.
Our other trucks and cranes are travelling off roads, off grid even, in weather and conditions most of us are afraid to release the wheel for a second, let alone give it up to a computer, a fish eye lens, and a bunch of sensors. But we will monitor the progress as it seems to have slowed to creeping mode. The Tech problems have turned into mountains of risk; the potential harm and destruction with an 80,000 lb object hurtling down a busy highway, at 100 km per hour.
We will monitor but Encore will not attempt any experiments until the technology is fail safe and proven.
We have over 2 year incident and accident free throughout our fleet, and we will not jeopardize that accomplishment until we see real proof of secure and foolproof systems.
And we move on. As we look around our buildings, our yards; we saw little green space, or plants. This is where we work everyday. We did some work and planted bushes, trees and grass features; and maintained what was there. We removed old plantings, dead growth, and dead trees; replacing them with fresh healthy shrubs.
But it’s a hard working industrial area; warehousing surrounded by scruffy gravel yards, scrap piles, tired trucks and stock piles of every kind of steel and timber; offices that look like overgrown dog houses, or someone’s RV with the wheels off; no designer controls out here. So we stand out just a little by keeping a clean organized yard, a descent building with verandas and a bit of a look, and we have a summer garden coming this spring.
We’re right beside the highway, everyone can see down into the yard, along the grassy fence line. We thought we would create something to look at, to enjoy; something more than just nice, something positive, alive and growing. Our summer garden is safely in the ground, the fall planting of flowers, under a foot or two of snow; resting, waiting for the warm weather. It runs along our fence, right next to Sherwood Drive then around the corner down the other fence line along HWY 16, another 500 ft.
We have 2-3000 square feet of Bee friendly, because we thought that was an important element in today’s eco system; a Bee friendly strata of dozens of types and colors of natural Alberta wild flowers. Every 3 fence sections, we change color and species, and against the fence, we should have taller sunflowers for dramatic effect.
We anticipate some public attention and it should be a colorful pleasant site, with the scent of the flowers and splotches of waving blossoms and stocks. All the names of the blooms will be displayed, and our people are already proposing a walkway, if we see the need. And perhaps a bench or two to sit and enjoy, absorb.
We really don’t know how this will work out. It is way outside of our work scope. Yet last spring we inadvertently tossed some home sod, and dirt into the weeds in the back of our yard and grew a tiny garden of flowers and color out of the discarded dirt.
How hard can it be? If those aren’t famous last words I don’t know what is.
More improvements coming.
Flowers and a positive carbon credit. That’s a Win, Win!