‘No excuses’ for zero-emission freight as 19 organisations demand action

A group of 19 organisations, including Michelin, the city of Porto and Deutsche Post DHL Group, have signed the Transport Decarbonisation Alliance’s zero-emission freight ‘call for action’.

The group want to raise awareness to manufacturers that the demand for zero-emission freight vehicles is there and the transition needs to be accelerated so that air pollution can be curbed in urban areas.

Organisations who have signed up the pledge say they will be able to replace almost 100,000 of their current fleet to zero-emission alternatives and want to replace more in the future.

However, they say suppliers are still not convinced the demand is there.

According to EU data, trucks and lorries are accountable for 27 % of road transport CO2 emissions and almost 5 % of EU greenhouse gas emissions. Since 1990, truck and lorry vehicle emissions have increased by 25 %, mainly because of an increase in road freight traffic.

UK firm Tevva Motors has signed the pledge, and David Thackray, their sales & marketing director, said: ‘We have long argued that it’s imperative that transport de-carbonisation gets the same priority and political attention that has recently been given to improving air quality.

‘We must eliminate CO2 in parallel with NOx, SOx and PM — it’s not an either/or decision.  Zero emission transport is achievable now, there are no more excuses.’

A recent report by the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) said the UK government should ban the sale of new diesel HGV lorries before 2040 and encourage the freight industry to move towards clean alternatives such as hydrogen or electric

The report says clean technology for HGVs is ‘well advanced’ and ministers should set out within the next two years how they plan to support the transition.

However, there was kick back from certain sections of the freight sector, with Richard Burnett of the Road Haulage Association saying a ‘premature’ switch to zero-emissions lorries would disproportionately impact small freight operators.

In other related news, the EU Parliament passed legislation that will ensure EU-based truck and lorry manufacturers cut CO2 emissions for new vehicles by 15% by 2025 and 30% by 2030, or face heavy fines.



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