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Landmark Collaboration to Accelerate the Shift to Zero-Carbon Freight: Smart Freight Centre, BSR and the World Economic Forum Announce the Establishment of Sustainable Freight Buyers Alliance

Amsterdam, Thursday 22 July 2021 - Smart Freight Centre, a global non-profit organization dedicated to sustainable freight transport, together with BSR and the World Economic Forum, announced today a new alliance to decarbonize freight transport by 2050. The Alliance is in partnership with the We Mean Business Coalition and the Mission Possible Partnership (MPP).

  • The Sustainable Freight Buyers Alliance (SFBA) will catalyze and operationalize demand driven business leadership to decarbonize freight transport, and increase transparency in companies’ progress towards their zero emissions targets.
  • The aggregate commitments and purchasing actions of major freight buyers will advance the transport value chain decarbonization potential and help them reduce their own scope 3 emissions.
Freight currently represents approximately 8% of global CO2 emissions and is a critical element for achieving global climate goals.

The aim of the collaboration is to join forces in accelerating the shift to zero carbon freight across all modes of transport, through consolidating and scaling up the demand signal with ambitious sustainable freight purchasing commitments and supporting buyers to access sustainable freight initiatives and services.

"The Sustainable Freight Buyers Alliance is exactly what is needed in this moment and I could not think of three better equipped organizations to join forces to amplify existing work and pool green demand to drive the decarbonization of freight. The We Mean Business Coalition is proud to support this initiative,"
- Rasmus Valanko, Managing Director, Systems Transformation, at the We Mean Business Coalition, and Head of Green Demand Hub, at MPP.

In order to drive system-wide change, a new type of collaborative platform is needed, purposefully designed to send a united market signal across the entire freight ecosystem. SFBA will harness current efforts and help accelerate existing freight initiatives for freight buyers to better leverage industry action.

"Driving down emissions from freight transport is critical to achieve the Paris Agreement goals. It is great to see many ambitious zero emission freight targets, but it is time to put the emphasis on how these goals will be achieved. There are a lot of ongoing efforts to support freight buyers and suppliers, but they risk fragmentation. SFBA will act to centralize the demand signal while promoting key freight initiatives toward freight buyers. It will also develop and house a standardized multimodal reporting system for freight greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, to improve credibility and transparency.”
- Eszter Tóth-Weedon, Director of SFBA
“Bold leadership is needed to bring emissions from the freight and logistics sectors in line with global climate goals. This dynamic collaboration will create a platform to enable such leadership, helping to scale and deploy low-carbon freight innovations to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 while creating a more prosperous operating environment for our businesses, making business more sustainable and resilient.”
- David Wei, BSR Managing Director, Climate
“Pooling green demand is top of the agenda as a decarbonization lever for heavy transport and the MPP approach overall. This alliance will ensure standards-based demand signalling at the scale required to transform the logistics market this decade, and its ability to decarbonize transport assets worldwide by 2050.”
- Angie Farrag-Thibault, Clean Transport Lead at the World Economic Forum (and former Director of Green Freight Collaborations at BSR)
Through working with global buyers and tracking emission reduction progress across their entire freight value chain, SFBA will accelerate action and industry standards by collaborating with existing initiatives. By providing companies with insights on and access to freight related financials, policies and technology innovations, the Alliance will help them redefine productivity in their value chain.

Over the coming months, SFC with partners will fully establish the SFBA by creating a coordinating secretariat, developing a comprehensive blueprint for the full scope of work, and creating a circle of partners and companies. Our first target is to develop the SFBA Charter in collaboration with a circle of partners and companies, which will be launched at COP26.

Further information on the Alliance will be shared as it develops. SFBA encourages sustainable freight initiatives looking to increase their impact via collaboration to get in touch. Companies looking to scale impact and find out more about SFBA can also reach out to the SFBA team via raluca.voinea@smartfreightcentre.org.

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