California Cartage Company and the Ports of Long Beach & Los Angeles Just Got 232 New Trucks “Greener”

Daimler Trucks North America Delivers One Of The Nation’s First And Largest

Near-Zero Emission Natural Gas Truck Fleets

PORTLAND, OR – Daimler Trucks North America today held events celebrating delivery of 132 new natural gas (NG)-fueled tractors to drivers who contract with California Cartage Company and 100 new NG trucks for the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles’ Clean Truck Program. Marking an innovative partnership between the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the Southern California Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) and California Cartage, a private company committed to building a clean drayage fleet, the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles appear well on their way to becoming two of the “greenest” ports in the country.

Nearly $12 million in grant funding for California Cartage’s project has been provided by the South Coast Air Quality Management District using funding from a U.S. EPA grant and from California’s Proposition 1B Program. “The Air District is very proud to have played an important role in this aggressive alternative fuels project,” commented Dr. William Burke, Chairman of the agency’s Governing Board. “This clean truck project is good for California’s environment and California’s residents on all accounts. The project will prove that we can have a thriving port while still protecting public health. These ultra-clean LNG trucks will provide extremely important air quality benefits to those that live close to the ports and throughout our entire region.”

In addition to the 132 vehicles delivered to California Cartage, the 100 NG vehicles earmarked for deployment by licensed motor carriers and owner operators doing business with the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles will help meet the objectives of the Ports’ Clean Truck Program. The deployment of these near-zero emission trucks will lead to immediate improvements in air quality while enabling California Cartage’s drivers and the ports to comply with some of the most stringent emissions reductions standards in the world, setting new benchmarks in the future of harbor drayage.

California Cartage’s new low-emission natural gas fleet is the result of plans developed by California Cartage Company working in cooperation with the EPA, CARB and the SCAQMD to remove older, pollution-creating trucks from the harbors. The initiative was developed to make the trucks more affordable for the benefit of owner operators working with California Cartage. The trucks, Sterling® Set-Back 113s, are factory-built to be fueled with natural gas. Ideal for port operations as well as natural gas utilities and municipalities, the new NG trucks are powered by the Cummins Westport ISL G engines.

"Our ports are a major economic engine, but that engine needs cleaning," said Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. "The trucks being introduced today support our mission to grow and green the Port of Los Angeles. Through our landmark Clean Truck Program, we are growing our ports and cleaning the air so that Angelenos can breathe easier."

“This is a proud day for Long Beach,” said Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster, who was recently appointed to chair the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ (USCM) Environmental Committee, a leading position on climate change, air quality, and water infrastructure. “We’re making history in our commitment toward cleaner air and marking a significant milestone on our path toward a healthier and more productive port. I commend California Cartage’s leadership in ascertaining funds and deploying 132 new NG trucks for the benefit of their owner operator fleet.

“Using natural gas in place of other fuels can help ease a number of environmental concerns,” he added. “Natural gas trucks reduce pollutants by more than 90 percent and the technology has come a long way. While our buses have been using natural gas for years, these new trucks with next-generation natural gas powertrains have more power and burn cleaner.”

“By introducing the Set-Back 113 with natural gas, we’re giving our customers a hard-working truck that reduces both costs and environmental emissions,” said Chris Patterson, President and CEO of Daimler Trucks North America. “Through the development of this new truck, as well as all the others on exhibit today, we are helping to shape the future of clean technology. And with an expanded line of Class 3-8 vehicles, including new Freightliner® Business Class® M2s with natural gas that will soon be made available, as well as Freightliner diesel hybrids, other M2s, FLDs, new severe duty trucks and, coming soon for 2010, new models with Detroit Diesel’s BlueTec® SCR emissions control technology, our customers can spec a truck to meet all their applications.”

The Cummins Westport ISL G, an 8.9 liter stoichiometric cooled-exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) engine, offers the lowest emissions available in the industry without sacrificing top-level performance and efficiency. Available in ratings up to 320 hp, the ISL G already meets EPA 2010 standards with 85 percent lower NOx emissions than the C Gas Plus engine and features the highest power-to-weight ratio in class with an optimized turbocharger. The ISL G also features a maintenance-free exhaust system with a three-way catalyst (TWC). No further technology or after treatment will be required to meet 2010 emissions standards.

“Our tests show this new natural gas technology can save thousands in annual fuel and operating costs per truck,” said Robert Curry, President of California Cartage Company. “That will help owner operators and cartage companies save thousands per year in addition to the health benefits of cleaner air and reduced emissions. Our drivers will benefit from federal tax credits for alternative fuel vehicles and alternative fuel incentives, too, which mean that accessibility to NG fuel is on the rise.

“We are also proud to be on the cutting edge of creating a cleaner environment for our community,” Curry added. “By replacing 132 old diesel trucks, we will take tons of diesel particulate matter and tons of carbon out of the air over the life of this project (eight years).” According to California Cartage, the new trucks have been assigned to individual small fleets and owner operators.

Like all Daimler trucks, the Set-Back 113 with natural gas is durable and reliable, and ready to tackle any job. It sports a roomy and comfortable cab, superb visibility, maneuverability, ride and handling, all of which contribute to increased productivity for drivers and fleet owners.

Benefits of Natural Gas Trucks: When natural gas is burned, it produces virtually no emissions of sulfur dioxide or particulate matter and far lower levels of "greenhouse" gases and nitrogen oxides. According to information at and, natural gas vehicles generate 69 to 83% fewer greenhouse gases and non-methane hydrocarbon emissions, which result in fewer toxins to be inhaled. They also create 32 to 73% fewer nitrogen oxides which mean potentially fewer asthma attacks. Add to these benefits, less acid rain and water pollution.

Sterling Truck Corporation is a subsidiary of Daimler Trucks North America LLC and is the recipient of the 2007 J.D. Power and Associates award for Highest in Customer Satisfaction in Heavy Duty Truck Dealer Service. Daimler Trucks North America produces and markets Class 3-8 vehicles and is a Daimler AG company, the world's leading commercial vehicle manufacturer. For more information about this truck and to find a local dealer, visit or call 800-STL-HELP (800-785-4357).

California Cartage Company is a family-owned and controlled company now into a third generation involved in the company's operations on a day-to-day basis. The company has more than 1,200 owner-operators in its nationwide fleet, providing drayage, intermodal drayage and consolidation trucking services to warehouses, and specializes in import trucking, warehousing, deconsolidation, and distribution throughout Southern California. Within the last decade, the company also opened facilities and expanded into the Port of Savannah, Georgia, at the intermodal hub at Centerpoint, Elwood, Illinois, and in the Port of Oakland, California.

City of Long Beach, California: Long Beach is the first city to join both the Climate Registry and the California Climate Action Registry to track its progress in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Long Beach Transit continues to use more hybrid buses than any other system its size in the country. The city also plans to offer the first “green airport” in the nation, modernizing the facility by utilizing solar power and emissions reductions programs for runway equipment and on-site vehicles.

Port of Los Angeles: The Port of Los Angeles, also known as “America’s Port,” has a strong commitment to developing innovative strategic and sustainable operations that benefit the economy and the quality of life for the region and the nation it serves. A recipient of numerous environmental awards, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's 2007 Clean Air Excellence Award, the Port of Los Angeles is committed to innovating cleaner, greener ways of doing business. As the leading seaport in North America in terms of shipping container volume and cargo value, the Port generates 919,000 regional jobs and $39.1 billion in annual wages and tax revenues. A proprietary department of the City of Los Angeles, the Port is self-supporting and does not receive taxpayer dollars. The Port of Los Angeles - A cleaner port. A brighter future.

Related Press Releases