Traditional and Emerging Energy Innovation

Using Renewable Energy and Microgrids in Freight Transportation

Written by Staff Writer

Drivers and tractor-trailers delivering freight are a critical part of our economy, but when people see trucks going down the road, they don’t always think of “sustainability”. We have seen how investing in sustainability is good for our bottom line, the environment, our employees, and for our customers.

Three of our facilities have renewable energy with microgrid storage technology. PITT OHIO partnered with WindStax Energy to design and install a patented ZeroFirst® high voltage DC microgrid using PV and wind turbines to generate, store, and consume renewable energy on-site. Excess renewable energy is sent back to the utility when generation exceeds demand. This schema strikes a balance between self-consumption and net metering to reduce the facilities’ annual carbon footprint. Two of our facilities are completely Net Zero. At our newest facility in Cleveland OH, eight 60’ WindStax Energy wind turbines and 1,500 rooftop solar panels store close to 1 MWH in the DC-powered microgrid. The energy is stored and consumed on-site with the excess sent to the local utility grid. The microgrids power LED lights, electric forklifts, and other direct current consumption points as part of our LEED-certified buildings.

In 2022, PITT OHIO implemented 2 Volvo VNR electric heavy-duty units in our operation. In addition, another 3 Ford eTransit vans will be going to Cleveland. We see this combination of renewable energy, microgrid technology, and fleet electrification as a key part of our future strategy to reduce fuel usage and carbon emissions.

We also have the ability to provide any customer with a Scope 3 emissions report of shipments tendered to PITT OHIO. So, while we improve our carbon footprint, we are also improving our customers’ carbon footprint.

Candi Cybator
(412) 232-3015

About the author

Staff Writer