Freight transport and logistics are recognized to be large contributors to greenhouse gas emissions and to contribute to a set of specific problems (congestion, air and noise pollution), directly affecting climate change and pollution. Zero emission logistics is dedicated to address these problems, supporting both optimisation of the logistics movements as well as looking into the introduction of new technologies into the traditional logistics processes.
In 2007-2009, when I was working at TNT as part of the TNT Planet Me project, I developed a passion for this subject. More recently, in 2017-2020, I got the chance to dive deep into dynamic routing, optimisation of the logistics movements, at Bpost.
A pragmatic approach to zero emission logistics is required
Getting to zero emissions in logistics is an enormous challenge. In a cost-driven industry, a high-cost, high-risk focus on zero-emissions technology may position many players as part of the dirty past – not the clean future. We need a pragmatic approach that balances high-tech practices with practical ones that offer a role for everyone. We can reduce avoidable emissions through more efficient supply chains, but we need to shift mindsets. Reducing avoidable emissions alone won’t get us to zero. But this approach is open to everyone everywhere, starting now, and it can save fossil fuels in the present, and open the door to zero-carbon fuels in the future.