The remainder of the country is under mandate by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to begin selling the ultra-low-sulfur diesel (ULSD) by October 15. The move to use of the new fuel is a major step toward reducing engine emissions and is of great importance in the transportation of freight in the country.
As the Diesel Technology Forum points notes, 94% of all goods shipped by truck, train, boat and barge do so using diesel power. The organization says that nearly 90% of all commercial trucks in the U.S. are diesel powered. Railroads operate approximately 20,000 locomotives, all of which are run by diesel. Ocean-going container ships are powered by large diesels and tugs that move barges are diesel-powered.
On June 1, the U.S. refining industry began shifting 80% of its diesel production to ULSD to meet the EPA regulations. It estimates that $8 billion has been spent in order to make the switch. On-road large trucks are required to use newer, lower-emission engines beginning with the 2007 model year. Combined with the use of ULSD, the significant reduction in emissions of soot and nitrogen oxides will greatly benefit the environment.