Photo via XL Hybrids.

Photo via XL Hybrids.

Beverage companies have increased the fuel economy of their fleets by nearly 13% since 2010, according to recent findings by the American Beverage Association. The improvement is the result of an industry-wide initiative to reduce its carbon footprint.

The beverage industry has the largest fleet of heavy-duty hybrid commercial vehicles in North America, according to the ABA. As a result, the industry has been increasing fuel economy by 3% per year.

The findings emerged from collaboration between The Coca-Cola Company, PepsiCo and Dr Pepper Snapple Group in which all companies agreed to share proprietary data on truck fleets with the ABA. Using that data, the ABA was able to determine how well the industry is doing at reducing fuel consumption.

There are currently 1,700 vehicles in beverage fleets that use either alternative fuels or a fuel efficient powertrain. This includes more than 250 service vehicles which were converted to hybrid powertrains, and all-electric refrigerated trucks. Companies have also expanded use of practical fuel-saving measures such as tire pressure monitoring, use of lighter materials, telematics, aerodynamics and others.

The beverage industry also works with other groups and initiatives dedicated to reducing emissions impact and improving fuel efficiency, such as the SmartWay Transport Partnership, National Clean Fleets Partnership Program, Business for Social Responsibility and others.

“America’s beverage industry is committed to sharing new ideas and business practices that will advance the development of technologies to lower its carbon footprint,” said Susan Neely, ABA president and CEO. “When it comes to environmental sustainability, the beverage industry is united and continuing to lead.”