Carbon emissions are a component of on a regular basis life, from the cars we drive to the ability stations creating the electricity for our homes. But did you furthermore may know the buyer items you purchase, whether it’s a toy in your child or a latest suit for a job interview, all have a carbon footprint too?
These consumer items’ carbon footprints include the emissions from the factories that produce them, in fact, but they’re also held chargeable for a few of the carbon emissions produced to ship them. Each item a freight company ships accounts for a small portion of the emissions the semi-truck, cargo ship, train, airplane, or other technique of shipment creates.
Fortunately, freight corporations, like every other company, can strive to succeed in net-zero carbon emissions through many initiatives. Let’s review their road to net zero below.
How Do Freight Corporations Reach Net Zero?
Becoming a net-zero greenhouse gas emissions (GHG emissions) producer doesn’t necessarily mean a freight company doesn’t produce any greenhouse gasses. That’s simply impossible in today’s landscape, given they need to account for all emissions throughout the production, transportation, and even consumption of their services. Nevertheless, directly reducing their very own GHG emissions is a key step.
They’ll reduce their GHG emissions in some ways, and we’ll cover these strategies in a later section.
Freight corporations can further reduce their emissions and achieve net-zero status through sustainability initiatives, comparable to reducing fuel consumption, relying more on domestic-sourced fuel, and moving to more sustainable and cleaner biofuels.
After trimming their GHG emissions and maximizing their sustainability with the technology available today, freight corporations can expand their net-zero goals by supporting climate-sustaining and climate-improving initiatives and receive carbon offsets in the method, which we’ll cover more in depth later.
What Sorts of Strategies Can Freight Corporations Use on the Road to Net Zero?
Freight corporations can use various strategies to assist them achieve a net-zero carbon footprint and help fight climate change without negatively impacting the supply chain. Let’s review these strategies and their advantages.
Reduce Transportation-Related Emissions
Regardless of what mode a freight company uses — cargo ships, airplanes, trains, semi-trucks, or smaller delivery vehicles — they typically are the essential source of the corporate’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.
So, how do they reduce these emissions?
A Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines (Co-Optima) study found that vehicles with advanced turbocharging technology are 10% more efficient with pollution-reducing fuel options constituted of things like discarded cooking oils, algae, and manure. Additionally they found engines that may run on this fuel produce 60% fewer GHG emissions.
Co-Optima also mentions that while biofuels are still a piece in progress, freight corporations can speed up their path to net-zero by choosing today’s thriftier and more eco-friendly, low-carbon-emissions hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) as their delivery vehicles. On top of that, switching to electric cars as last-mile delivery vehicles — those who deliver to individual homes — can further speed up that plan by eliminating fossil fuels and emissions altogether.
Yes, electric cars need to connect with a charging source nightly, and firms often get their electricity from emission-producing power plants. Nevertheless, they’ll offset this by investing in solar panels and battery storage systems to charge these vehicles off the ability grid.
Waste within the freight industry is real, whether it’s semi-trucks driving long distances with only partial loads, trucks idling in rest areas, or ships moored at port idling their engines. And with waste comes a bigger carbon footprint attached to every item it’s delivering.
Freight corporations can work toward net zero by mitigating this waste through more efficient scheduling of routes or setting minimum shipment loads and offering sliding scale shipping fees to make sure they meet these minimums.
Technology can also be within the works to scale back truck idling at rest areas. These Idling Reduction Technologies (IRTs) depend on other types of power to maintain the truck cab warm or cool and run the limited electronics truck drivers use of their cab, like a refrigerator or small television. It may well be something so simple as an auxiliary power unit or generator to something more complex like a thermal storage system or truck stop electrification.
Freight corporations can drive the adoption of those IRTs by offering incentives to drivers who keep their idling time low.
One other option to reduce idle time is to avoid traffic congestion. Through technology and proper route planning, freight corporations can schedule routes that avoid high-traffic times and areas.
The physical transport of products isn’t the one opportunity to scale back emissions. Their hubs also produce emissions from the electricity they use, the waste they produce, and more. Some actions they’ll take to reduce the GHG emissions at their hubs include:
- Switching to LED light bulbs
- Installing water-conservation technology
- Installing solar panels or other clean energy technology
- Planting trees on their property
- Scheduling shifts and installing automation for max energy efficiency
- Reducing waste through reuse and recycling
- Installing emission-reducing technology on any emission-producing equipment
Eyes on the Future
Technology is continuously evolving, including the tech that might help a freight company achieve net-zero emissions. So it’s vital to all the time have a watch on the long run of transportation and what latest technology is on the horizon that may further reduce an organization’s carbon footprint.
Some exciting modes of transport on the horizon now include EV freight and semi-trucks and hybrid and full-electric planes.
So, if freight corporations and transportation services have a watch on the long run, they’ll prepare to take a position in emerging emissions-reducing tech and all the time stay on the leading edge.
Buy Carbon Offsets
In lots of cases, corporations cannot get to net-zero emissions independently. Some corporations, like freight corporations, will likely have at the least some emissions for the foreseeable future. That is where carbon offsets might help.
Carbon offsets, like those from Terrapass, allow individuals and corporations to take a position money in green projects, comparable to reforestation, decarbonization, forestry conservation, renewable energy, and more to offset any remaining carbon emissions they can’t eliminate through the above methods.
Offsets may be great stopgap measures while corporations travel down the road to net zero.
What Is Included in Net Zero?
Attending to a net-zero carbon footprint requires way more than an organization reducing its own carbon emissions. Three varieties of emissions comprise an organization’s carbon footprint: scope 1, scope 2, and scope 3. They need to reduce or offset all three scopes.
- Scope 1 emissions: These are direct emissions the corporate emits. For a freight company, this may very well be the emissions its vehicles produce, emissions from equipment use, and other GHG emissions the corporate produces in its each day operations.
- Scope 2 emissions: These are indirect emissions but are still related to the corporate itself, comparable to the emissions the ability plant that gives its electricity produces.
- Scope 3 emissions: These are indirect emissions produced outside the corporate but still related to the corporate and its services. These can include the emissions staff produce commuting to the corporate, business travel, emissions produced by suppliers, and others not covered by scope 1 or 2.
Over and over, it’s scope 2 and three emissions which might be the toughest to scale back, which is where carbon offsets can are available in to assist.
Moreover, being a net-zero organization means eliminating all GHG gases, not only carbon. This includes things like methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), and other hydrofluorocarbons.
What Corporations Are Already Net Zero?
Within the freight and shipping sector, no corporations currently claim to be net zero, and only 35% of the 94 major shipping corporations aim to be by 2050.
For corporations which have made the net-zero pledge, they’ve made commitments that meet these criteria:
- They set reduction targets for GHG emissions that align with The Paris Agreement‘s standard, which is to maintain global warming under 2 degrees Celsius in comparison with preindustrial levels.
- They need to release public annual reports of their GHG emissions and progress reports that show improvement every yr.
- They’re required to fulfill or exceed other industry- and company-specific criteria, including publishing scientific papers, mentoring other organizations or the general public, or contributing to offsetting or environmental, social, and governance (ESG) projects.
Across all industries, the highest corporations which have made and adhered to their net-zero pledge as of 2022 and their net-zero goal date include:
- Orange: 2040
- Brambles: No set goal date
- Siemens AG: 2030
- City Developments Limited (CDL): 2030
- LafargeHolcim: 2050
- Ford: 2050
- Hon Hai: 2050
- Polska Grupa Energetyczna (PGE): 2050
- Woolworths: 2050
- American Airlines: 2050
Currently, no corporations have attained net-zero emissions. Often confused with net-zero emissions is carbon neutrality, which many corporations are. Carbon neutrality means the corporate has offset or eliminated all its carbon dioxide emissions only. This remains to be a notable achievement and a component of becoming a full net-zero company.
How Long Will It Take to Reach Net Zero?
As you possibly can see above, reaching net-zero emissions is a marathon and never a sprint. Loads of obstacles stand in the way in which, comparable to budget constraints, policies, procedures, and awaiting the technology to be developed and perfected.
As mentioned, only 35% of the 94 major corporations within the freight and shipping industry have made the net-zero commitment by 2050. This implies it may very well be mid-century before the freight corporations reach net-zero emissions. The commitment rate could increase as technology and policies evolve, but as of 2023, that is where it stands.
Only 35% of the main freight corporations making the net-zero pledge is evidence of the challenges freight corporations expect to face while striving for this goal. Nevertheless, the near-term milestones they are going to reach along the roadmap to net zero will still positively impact climate risk.
It’s a Long Path to Net Zero, But a Worthwhile One
Global emission reduction and other climate motion to reverse the impacts of climate change and lower the global temperature will not be something that’ll occur overnight. It can take a few years, but the long run of our planet rests on corporations making and reaching net-zero commitments.
Terrapass might help freight corporations reach these targets through carbon offsets, which fund climate-related initiatives, comparable to reforestation, alternative energy, conservation, and more. Terrapass offers packages suitable for businesses and individuals alike.
If what you are promoting has a fancy offset plan and wishes a custom product honed to its needs, our advisors might help construct a custom offset program for you.
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