But construction equipment manufacturers are stepping up and pioneering some of the latest in energy-saving technology.
Japan's top construction equipment makers, Hitachi and Kobelco, both have working excavator prototypes that feature hybrid-drive systems.
In the United States, market-leader Caterpillar is in the final stages of testing a bulldozer that uses electric motors. Each firm claims fuel efficiency increases of 25 percent, which could translate into thousands of dollars in savings per year for construction companies.
CNBC's Maria Bartiromo takes a look at some of the manufacturers who are looking to create the next generation of construction equipment (See video above).