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Archive for the ‘logistics’ Category

Maritime Industry Goes Sustainable

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Shipping lines, shipbuilders, banks, insurers and shippers are joining forces on a major sustainability initiative that’s “designed to help the industry make long-term plans for future success.”

They call it the Sustainable Shipping Initiative/Vision 2040. They even assert that “radical changes” are needed to make the global shipping industry more energy efficient, environmentally-friendly and sustainable for the long haul.

The initiative unites maritime-related companies from across the industry with the NGO’s Forum for the Future and WWF, including:

Written by William DiBenedetto

November 10, 2011 at 2:00 am

Staxxon: Folding the box inside the box

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Containerization revolutionized the maritime freight transportation industry more than 50 years ago; those ubiquitous 20- and 40-foot steel intermodal boxes seen in ports and on truck and rail chassis have made cargo handling faster, easier, safer and more efficient.

The next revolutionary phase of containerization might well reside in the vertical folding container from Staxxon Technologies, a clever solution to the old trade imbalance problem of moving and repositioning empty containers from where the freight isn’t to where the freight is. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by William DiBenedetto

November 1, 2011 at 2:00 am

IMO’s “Mandatory” Vessel Emission Reduction Regime

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An International Maritime Organization panel adopted what it is called “mandatory” design and operational measures to reduce greenhouse gases from international shipping.

According to the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee, which has met 62 times on this issue, last month’s action is the “first ever mandatory greenhouse gas reduction regime for an international industry sector.”

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Written by William DiBenedetto

August 9, 2011 at 2:00 am

EPA’s SmartWay program expands to drayage

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Goods movement stakeholders in port areas and the Environmental Protection Agency have launched an initiative that’s designed to help clear the air and reduce emissions in the nation’s port areas.

The EPA SmartWay Drayage Program builds on clean truck programs that have been around at various port regions for several years.

The players with the EPA in the nationwide initiative include: The Coalition for Responsible Transportation and the Environmental Defense Fund. The CRT partners comprise: Best Buy; Hewlett Packard; Home Depot; JC Penney; Lowe’s; Nike; Target; Wal-Mart; and the following port trucking carriers: California Cartage Express, LLC; California Multimodal, LLC; Container Connection; Evans Delivery Company, Inc.; GSC Logistics; PDS Trucking Inc.; Performance Team/Gale Triangle; Total Transportation Services, Inc.; and the Western Ports Transportation.

The launch was announced recently at the Port of Charleston, SC. According to the joint announcement, the program “builds a partnership between numerous goods movement stakeholders including major national retailers, trucking companies, port communities, environmental groups and the U.S. EPA to solve a critical health and environmental challenge: how to reduce harmful air emissions from port drayage trucks.”

Drayage trucks, which haul cargo containers arriving at ports to storage areas, transload centers and nearby distribution centers, are usually old and a major source of diesel emissions in and around port areas. Getting those vehicles off the road is one of the thorniest and most controversial port and transportation issues around.

In a statement, Rick Gabrielson, who is the CRT President and is Target’s Director of Import Operations, said, “This partnership will generate private sector investment in clean technology, improve the environmental quality of our nation’s port communities and demonstrate the commitment we have made as the shipping industry’s leaders to emissions reductions.”

The program “offers great incentives for independent owner operators and trucking companies to replace their older drayage trucks with cleaner, less polluting models,” said Marcia Aronoff, the EDF’s senior vice president for programs. “With the rise in population and the growth of the freight transportation industry, we must be vigilant, forward thinking and creative in finding solutions that reduce toxic emissions and embrace market-based sustainability efforts.”

The drayage program is based on the EPA’s SmartWay Transport Partnership, generally regarded as an innovative and successful collaboration between the EPA and goods movement interests. The voluntary program provides a framework for assessing and addressing transportation-related emissions and energy efficiency while recognizing superior environmental performance through market-based incentives.

Under the program, port trucking companies and independent owner-operators sign a partnership agreement and commit to track diesel emissions, replace their older dirtier trucks with cleaner, newer ones, and achieve at least a 50 percent reduction in particulate matter and 25 percent reduction in nitrous oxide (NOx) below the national industry average within three years.

Then the SmartWay retailers sign a partnership agreement, committing to ship at least 75 percent of their port cargo with SmartWay trucking companies within three years.

“By giving business priority to SmartWay drayage carriers, the program creates a market-driven approach to incentivize emissions reductions at port communities across the country,” EPA says.

This approach has worked well in the Pacific Northwest, where market-based clean truck programs between stakeholders at the ports of Seattle and Tacoma have been around since 2008 and have removed hundreds of dirty drayage trucks from those port areas.

Written by William DiBenedetto

July 8, 2011 at 2:03 am

Can Supply Chains Reduce Emissions and Costs?

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It’s not necessarily an either/or proposition. Logistics managers trying to optimize supply chains for sustainability and emissions reductions face a tough question: how to implement those goals without breaking the bank.

The conventional thinking is that there’s always tradeoff: A transport company can reduce its CO2 emissions along a supply chain, but at a higher operating cost. Often much higher.

Findings released last month during a webinar sponsored by Finished Vehicle Logistics magazine suggest that in certain cases at least the best of both worlds is possible. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by William DiBenedetto

June 7, 2011 at 2:00 am

Is Short Sea Shipping Enviro Friendly?

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It’s very possible that short sea shipping, long touted as an economically viable and environmentally sound option for transporting domestic cargo and products, is not all it’s cracked up to be from an eco-friendly perspective, according to a Friends of the Earth report.

Short sea shipping is the regional transport—on lakes, bays, rivers, canals and coastlines—of freight by ship and tug and barge units, rather than by truck or railcar.

FOE’s report, funded by the San Francisco Foundation, says the environmental consequences of increased short sea shipping have not received enough scrutiny, especially with regard to potentially harmful health and environmental effects. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by William DiBenedetto

February 7, 2011 at 3:52 pm

Light bulb moment: DHL reducing carbon footprint with lighting retrofit

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Global logistics giant DHL is launching a coordinated lighting retrofit program at its Global Forwarding unit warehousing and distribution facilities in the Americas region, part of an “interim target” of reaching a 5 percent improvement in carbon efficiency by the end of year.

The program initially will be rolled out in the U.S. before expanding to Canada and Mexico, the company said.

As part of parent Deutsche Post DHL and its GoGreen climate protection program, which debuted in North America last year, DHL Global Forwarding’s goal is to reduce its carbon footprint by 30 percent by 2020.

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Written by William DiBenedetto

August 30, 2010 at 2:00 am

Wallenius reduces GHG footprint while delivering lots of cars

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Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics (WWL), the Scandinavian ro-ro vessel operator and logistics company, cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 32 percent last year, mainly through reduced fuel consumption due to lower volumes and the use of lower sulfur fuels.

The Oslo-based WWL says it also cut sulfur dioxide emissions by 135,000 tons over the nine-year period from 2000-2009, an amount nearly equal to all of the SO2 emissions from road vehicles in the U.S. for an entire year.

The latter point is a little odd as a bragging point because WWL provides factory-to-dealer ocean transportation for the automotive, agricultural and construction equipment industries. In other words, its roll on-roll off fleet of car carriers move a good portion of the vehicles that wind-up pumping all those emissions into the U.S. each year. The company moved 1.23 million units last year by sea; it operates more than 60 “environmentally adapted car carriers and RoRo vessels” in operation on 20 trade routes to six continents.

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Written by William DiBenedetto

May 13, 2010 at 10:32 am

GoGreen gets to North America

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dhl_gogreen11DHL’s GoGreen climate change program has reached North America’s shores, but not the U.S.  A year after the GoGreen launch in Europe the German package express delivery and logistics has made it available in Canada.

DHL Express Canada’s GoGreen service is described by the company as a “carbon-neutral” shipping option that “enables Canadian businesses of all sizes to ship their goods internationally without leaving an environmental footprint.”

DHL adds that the value-added service that makes use of carbon offsets and low emission transporation technologies provides companies with a seamless, eco-friendly friendly shipping option; it’s available from anywhere in Canada to more than 220 countries around the world.

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Written by William DiBenedetto

October 27, 2009 at 3:46 pm

Shining industrial rooftops

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Prologis2Warehouses and distribution facilities may be emptier inside than usual these days, but the rooftop space above is a great and largely untapped solar energy resource.

Distribution facility developer ProLogis, which was hard-hit last year by the collapse of the real estate industry, is on the cutting edge of what could and should be a bright business and  sustanability opportunity in the logistics and warehousing arena.

The Denver company has formed a Global Renewable Energy Group that will oversee the procurement, development  and management of new eco-friendly properties while providing management services for renewable energy projects, including a major push to provide rooftop space for solar energy installations.

One of the group’s first management efforts was announced recently: A new, 4.8-megawatt (MW) solar project that will be installed on eight rooftops at the ProLogis Park Sant Boi in Barcelona and ProLogis Park Alcala in Madrid, Spain. It’s a co-development arrangement with San Francisco’s Recurrent Energy that also marks Recurrent’s first foray into Europe.

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Written by William DiBenedetto

October 7, 2009 at 11:52 am

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