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Powering the U.S. Economy

With its unmatched combination of energy density, fuel efficiency, power and performance, diesel engines are the primary technology driving 15 key sectors of the nation’s economy


Diesel power is the lifeblood of the global economy, and the US is a technology leader in the manufacturing of advanced diesel technology as well as the production of diesel and renewable fuels. America’s advanced diesel technology is a leading export and highly desired in every corner of the globe because of its reliability, durability, efficiency, and overall performance. 

From diesel-powered generators that provide critical electrical power, to farm tractors that enable greater food production and productivity with less fuel, to construction machines and equipment that build and maintain the critical transportation and utilities infrastructure, diesel technology is at work. It makes progress possible around the globe.

Diesel is one our nation’s greatest environmental and economic assets. By producing the world’s cleanest diesel fuel, making engines that have near zero emissions and increased fuel efficiency, and the expanding supply of high-quality advanced renewable biodiesel fuels, diesel engines and equipment in the U.S. are well positioned to help meet the climate and clean air challenges of the future in this country and around the world.    

Report Details Diesel’s Economic and Employment Value Throughout U.S. Economy

The Diesel Technology Forum released an economic report, "Diesel Powers the U.S. Economy: Providing High-Paying Jobs, Exports and Long-Term Productivity Gains in the Nation's Fundamental Sectors", authored by Aspen Environmental Group and M.Cubed, which quantifies the diesel industry's current contribution to the economy and its evolution as a sustainable, green, high value-added industry.

Continued economic growth requires cost-effective transportation of goods, construction of infrastructure and extraction of resources using powerful, efficient, inexpensive motive power. Diesel is the prime fuel for transporting freight, powering tractors, building roads, and meeting critically important demand for emergency services and national defense.

More than four-fifths of products exported from and imported to the United States by truck, train, ship, or intermodal means – are moved using diesel technology. Three-quarters of the fossil-fueled equipment used in construction, mining, and agriculture are diesel-powered. Diesel engines are the primary motive force for land and sea-route mass transit. Many emergency vehicles, such as fire and rescue vehicles, have diesel engines. Hospitals, government offices and businesses often rely on fast-response times and full load-carrying capability of diesel generators for emergency standby power. Our national defense relies on diesel to move material, munitions, and weapons, both between theatres and on the battlefield. In short, diesel’s contribution to factories, farms and families is ubiquitous.

The advantages of diesel are manifest, making it a prime choice for these applications. Diesel power is energy-efficient, has high weight and energy power output ratios, has famously reliable and durable engines which can use renewable fuels, is highly portable and compact, and is safer compared to alternatives.

The synergistic relationship between the nation’s economic well-being and use of diesel technology can be seen even more clearly by examining the linkage between prosperity and diesel-reliant activity such as freight movement. For example, fuel use in trucks is highly correlated with GDP growth, moving together 98.5%of the time. The Ceridian-UCLA Pulse of Commerce Index™ builds on the economic relationships of freight movement and diesel fuel use to track and forecast US economic activity on a nearly real-time basis.

For more insights on the economic impacts of diesel technology view the report below.

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Diesel-Powers-US-Economy---NAFTANEXT-sharable---v31

Download Diesel Powers the U.S. Economy: Providing High-Paying Jobs, Exports and Long-Term Productivity Gains in the Nation's Fundamental Sectors.

Download the full report with appendices.

The report includes detailed information about diesel’s economic value and employment impact on the nation’s economy including the following sectors:

Highlights: Diesel Moves 90% of All Freight 

Diesel-powered trucks, trains, ships, and barge systems move approximately 90% of the nation’s freight tonnage. Diesel technology moves more than 80% of all cargo in the country and more than 90% throughout the world.

Diesel is Dominant in the Agriculture, Mining & Construction Industries

Diesel power provides more than two-thirds of the energy for machinery and equipment used in off-road applications such as agriculture, construction, and mining. The nation gets 93% of its energy from mined sources, such as petroleum, natural gas, coal, and uranium.

Diesel Options for SUVs and Pickup Trucks 

Diesel options are available in compact, full-size, and heavy-duty pickup trucks and vans, as well as full-size SUVs. Diesel engines provide consumers with high fuel efficiency, extended driving range and outstanding performance in these larger and heavier vehicles.

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