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Over 20 global companies partner to tackle heavy transport emissions

In California, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and Smart Carbon Freight Centre formally launched their newest project, Transforming Heavy Transport - designed to accelerate emissions reductions across global freight and logistics operations. The launch was held at the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco on September 11.

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and Smart Carbon Freight Centre (SFC) have launched “Transforming Heavy Transport”, a project designed to accelerate emissions reductions across global freight and logistics.

According to the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), a Switzerland-headed global, CEO-led organization of over 200 leading businesses working together to accelerate the transition to a sustainable world, freight emissions account for approximately 30 percent of transport-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from fuel combustion. This number is set to quadruple over the next 30 years with an intensified international trade.

We will not limit global warming to well below 2°C if we do not address emissions across the transport sector. The Transforming Heavy Transport project will enable the kinds of partnerships and solutions that can successfully reduce emissions in a sector that is notoriously difficult to decarbonize, said Peter Bakker, President, and CEO at WBCSD.

Formally launched at the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco on September 11, the Transforming Heavy Transport project seeks to address these issues by unifying business towards low-emissions heavy transport. Supported by the We Mean Business coalition, Transforming Heavy Transport brings together a global community of companies who are working on emissions reductions from freight and logistics operations. Together they’re developing a strategy to lower heavy transport emissions, building on existing initiatives.

We Mean Business is excited to support the ambitious efforts of business to lower emissions from heavy transport. Transforming Heavy Transport demonstrates how businesses can work together to lead the transition to low-carbon freight and logistics, said Nigel Topping, CEO of We Mean Business.

The companies in the project are identifying gaps in decarbonizing transport and incorporating new collaborators to find solutions. As part of this, the Smart Freight Centre (SFC), a Netherlands-headed global non-profit organization that aims to make the global freight sector more efficient and environmentally sustainable. is currently developing a logistics procurement guideline framework.

The framework includes greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and air pollutants as criteria for companies to consider when designing or subcontracting freight services, encouraging service providers and transport operators to reduce freight and logistics emissions across the supply chain.

This project is unique because it develops a strategy based on the perspective of corporations at the end of the logistics supply chain. Other strategies being developed may be too government-centric, or too high level for companies to make moves to decarbonize freight. Addressing this is a key element of the Transforming Heavy Transport project, said Sophie Punte, Executive Director of Smart Freight Centre.

The project aims to release key deliverables starting in 2019.

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