As it is in many large cities, air pollution has long been a major problem in Athens, Greece. However, aside from the usual health issues found in other areas, air pollution is a concern in Athens because of the effect it can have on ancient sites like the Acropolis. To help reduce at least a little bit of the mess in the air, the city has just bought 108 new trash collection trucks from Mercedes-Benz that are fueled by compressed natural gas. The Mercedes-Benz Econic NGT trucks emit about 90 percent fewer particulates than the diesel trucks they are replacing and 25 percent less CO2 when running on traditional natural gas. If the trucks are operated on biogas (which is made from organic matter), the net CO2 reduction is nearly 100 percent. The high octane methane also allows the engines to operate much more quietly than either gas or diesel engines. The new trucks meet the Enhanced Environmentally-friendly Vehicle emission standard which goes well beyond current EURO V standards. The press release is after the jump.

[Source: Daimler]


Athens chooses the ecofriendly Mercedes-Benz Econic NGT
Stuttgart/Athens, Jul 24, 2009

The city of Athens is buying 108 Mercedes-Benz Econic vehicles featuring innovative, ecofriendly natural gas technology for use in refuse collection
*This underlines the Greek capital's commitment to social responsibility and protection of the environment
*The ecofriendly gas drive system performs outstandingly well on emissions, producing up to 90 percent fewer particulate emissions and up to 100 percent less CO2 than an advanced diesel vehicle, for example – thereby making a substantial contribution to improving air quality

Stuttgart/Athens – The Mercedes-Benz Econic NGT – the ecofriendly special-purpose vehicle for municipal services, collection operations and distribution – keeps city centres cleaner and more pleasant thanks to its low-emission drive system. Recently, the city of Athens decided to deploy the Econic featuring a gas drive system. The Greek capital has ordered 108 new vehicles for urban waste disposal.

In addition to exemplary particulate emission levels, including a reduction of up to 90 percent in soot and particulate matter, the Econic NGT scores highly on its carbon footprint, delivering a 25 percent reduction when run on fossil natural gas and a 100 percent saving with regenerative biogas. Smog-forming pollutants such as NOx are also significantly lower. The Econic with gas drive system therefore fulfils the stringent EEV (Enhanced Environmentally-friendly Vehicle) emission standard, which is much stricter than the current Euro 5 emission standard.

The Econic with gas drive system is also pioneering when it comes to noise emissions. Due to its high octane rating, combustion of natural gas is much quieter than petrol or diesel. As a result, these vehicles are quieter than conventional petrol or diesel vehicles. The natural-gas Econic systematically helps attain en­viron­mental targets

Special-purpose vehicle for municipal use
As a special-purpose vehicle designed for specific applications such as municipal services, collection and distribution, the Mercedes-Benz Econic offers a range of characteristics unlike any conventional truck. It is suitable for waste disposal as well as for use as a firefighting vehicle, tanker or transport vehicle in the distribution sector. Benefits include low access through a wide-opening, fully glazed folding passenger door and a level cab floor based on a low-floor concept. There is also space for up to three passengers.

The lightweight aluminium space cage cab with a low-reaching windscreen provides excellent frontward and all-round visibility coupled with ample headroom for the driver and passengers alike to facilitate entry and exit. The Mercedes-Benz Econic is exemplary in terms of environmental technology, ergonomics, handling and comfort alike.

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