A total of 32 electric power outlets will help trucks at the Golden State Foods (GSF) distribution center to cut costs and lower air emissions as part of a Duke Energy electrification project.

As one of the largest diversified suppliers to the foodservice and retail industries, GSF will allow cargo trucks to stop idling their engines to keep food cold, and instead plug into power outlets at the facility. The $300,000 project will help lower exhaust emissions, and is cheaper than the practice of running trucks on diesel fuel. SafeConnect® Systems installed the power outlets.

"Duke Energy is a strong believer in the benefits of electrification for our industrial customers," says Clark Gillespy, senior vice president, Economic Development at Duke Energy. "At Golden State Foods, truck idling will be lessened, saving money, lowering noise levels, and reducing air emissions."

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, long-duration truck idling results in more than 1 billion gallons of wasted fuel and 11 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year. On average, an hour of idling uses a gallon of fuel.

"Incorporating renewable energy at all GSF facilities and fleets is a priority, and part of our fundamental values and GSF's 2020 sustainability goals," says Gregg Tartlon, general manager, GSF Garner. "These new electric power outlets are estimated to save Garner nearly $110,000 a year, resulting in 80,000 gallons of fuel saved for our 65 trucks. There are 15 GSF and Quality Custom Distribution (a GSF-owned company) centers currently leveraging this type of technology."

"Because of Golden State Foods' pursuit of new solutions to realize internal carbon emission reduction goals, lower overall energy costs and keep drivers safe, we've had the privilege of installing our innovative electric standby connection system at more than 10 of their distribution facilities over the last three years," says Bob Provencher, director of technology and sales, SafeConnect.

Duke Energy funding for the project is available by a 2015 settlement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and environmental groups.