Comment: Tackling pollution in the city
Seb Robert, founder and CEO of Gophr – a London-based courier startup – comments on the importance of making fleets more efficient through the creation of data-driven, smart technology for B2B last-mile delivery.
Climate change is one of the defining issues of our time. In 2018, the world’s leading climate scientists warned that we have just 12 years to limit the effects of global warming. If we don’t succeed, the world could face worsening risks of drought, flooding, heat and poverty.
Recent years have seen several countries declare a climate emergency, with many nations announcing huge changes designed to limit their impact on the planet. And tackling pollution in cities is at the very heart of this debate.
With the pace of change accelerating, it’s vital that delivery and logistics companies are aware of new legislation designed to protect the environment. It’s also hugely important that companies keep an eye on what the future might hold, and are fully prepared to make any necessary changes as they arise.
Take a look at some of the ways in which governments and businesses are starting to take action on climate change, and what these changes might mean for the delivery and logistics industries.
Clean Air Zones
Clean Air Zones have been introduced across Europe, with many countries setting targets for the introduction of more of these green zones over the coming years. There are currently eight low emission zones in the UK, though a majority apply exclusively to buses with only two of these eight applying for more types of diesel engine vehicles. In these zones, vehicles must meet strict rules on emissions – or face a penalty. These rules are in place 24 hours a day, all week long, so it’s vital that companies needing to use these zones are aware of the rules, and able to adapt to them.
Making the switch to environmentally friendly vehicles
Delivery and logistics companies are starting to upgrade their fleets, with a whole range of newer, more environmentally friendly vehicles. We’ve seen encouraging developments in the capabilities of eco-friendly vehicles, and more companies are starting to take notice of the potential of these upgrades.
Delivery fleets are being modified, and in some cases completely transformed into newer, greener modes of transport. But difficulties remain for many companies wanting to make the switch. Such a change requires considerable investment, and for some the cost could be prohibitive. Other challenges, such as battery life, are still cause for concern amongst logistics professionals. But as technology develops, it’s highly likely that eco-friendly vehicles will become the norm, both in everyday life and in the delivery industry.
Greener delivery options
Many customers are now very aware of their own carbon footprint, and willing to make changes to reduce their own impact on the planet. As a result, we’ve seen a rise in the numbers of logistics and delivery companies offering customers greener delivery options.
By grouping deliveries based on their geographical location as well as the speed at which the company aims to deliver, businesses can start to offer a more eco-friendly way of delivering goods. Not only are such delivery options better for the environment, they can also be cost-effective for the company, and savings can be passed on to customers too.
Currently, transportation is responsible for 15% of carbon dioxide emissions worldwide. So the logistics and delivery industries have a huge role to play in halting the damage caused by climate change, and tackling pollution in cities.
There are already significant improvements being made, from adaptations to fleets to new delivery processes aimed at eliminating unnecessary journeys. But of course, more still needs to be done.
Keep an eye on the pledges being made by global corporations and governments, and look out for the latest technological developments aimed at reversing the damage of climate change, and protecting the planet for future generations.