Fundamental changes are required in the ways goods are transported and in the vehicles and energy sources we use to come close to 1.5-2˚ C scenario agreed under the Paris Climate Agreement. The solutions to improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions from road freight transport are known. First, we can use cleaner and more efficient vehicles and fuel, equip vehicles with fuel-saving technologies such as aerodynamics devices, and introduce maintenance and fuel management programs. Second, we can improve the efficiency of freight movement through better driving behavior, smart logistics planning, and load optimization and consolidation. And finally, we can optimize the use of trucks in a multi-modal freight system. However, road freight carriers cannot make the changes alone, especially as the market is fragmented and includes many small carriers. Dedicated programs and initiatives can help carriers to become, together with their customers, real Smart Freight Leaders.
Smart Trucks Platform Panel meeting
SFC’s Smart Trucks Platform aims to create an action perspective for road freight carriers by helping them to find the right technologies and solutions for trucks and fleet operations that are proven to work and reduce emissions. This is done in three ways: knowledge products on technologies and measures, training (‘Smart Transport Managers Training’) and networking & events. A key element is that we make use of and build on what already exists, and take this to markets for local implementation – such as China – where initiatives are still developing. For this reason, SFC established a “STP Panel” consisting of about 10 leading experts from trucking efficiency initiatives in different countries to guide the Smart Trucks Platform and provide input into its products.
The STP panel meeting in Amsterdam was a first step towards networking and scaling successes globally on smart truck initiatives. Participating leading initiatives included: Trucking Efficiency from the US (hosted by the North American Council for Freight Efficiency and Carbon War Room), Green Trucking Partnership from Australia, Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership from the UK, Centre of Sustainable Road Freight from the UK, ObjectifCO2 from France, and the Sustainable Logistics Center from Argentina. The International Road Transportation Union (IRU) and China Federation for Logistics and Purchasing (CFLP) also participated. During a two-day meeting we exchanged ideas, successes and challenges.
Different approaches that work
Next steps in the Smart Trucks Platform
The panel provided input to the draft Smart Transport Managers Training, and welcomed this as a service that likely addresses a need in developed and developing countries. The main recommendation on the development of a platform in China was to focus on technologies already available and involve OEMs in their uptake by carriers.
Next steps are to
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