“Green Business: a future in small steps…”

Ecology and green business

Logistics and road hauliers, we are not creators of Green Entrepreneurship, but consumers who use the existing and new means at our disposal to reduce nuisance. For example, we can make our building more energy-efficient thanks to new insulation techniques and new types of lighting (eg LED instead of halogen). On the road, manufacturers’ offerings of increasingly cleaner diesel vehicles are now significantly reducing emissions.

In December 2019, the European Commission unveiled its Green Deal including an industrial and energy circular economy action plan, as well as a green investment plan. The European Directive of 18-04-2020 with the target of reducing CO2 emissions by 30%2 trucks by 2030 is moving in this direction and should normally make a significant contribution to this environmental effort. However, the countries of the European Union are not equal in the effort required. They sometimes use the deadlines for transposition of European directives to their advantage. States proclaim their ecological will, while trying to favor their national carriers. Doubles or adaptation issues?

But the future seems, spurred on by the states, by obliging manufacturers to move towards the use of new energy sources, favoring renewable energy at the expense of fossil fuels.

What are the technical arguments for or against new energies?

the wholeelectric: It does not emit CO . from2 in use, announces battery life up to 22 yearbut offers insufficient battery life for a long distance activity† all on a global ecological balance, mitigated by the inadequate production of electricity of non-polluting origin.

The fuel cell: She offers autonomy and availability vehicles that are substantially equivalent to diesel, without CO emissions2† But the supply infrastructure and choice of vehicles are still in their infancy; all on a carbon balance of hydrogen production that still remains negative for the same reasons as all-electric.

Our goal as a carrier is to become a Green Business Maker ourselves, by offering our customers the cleanest possible offer.

Patrick Gindt, Managing Director, Yellow T International.

Biofuels: When we talk about renewable energy sources, Carbon footprint of biodiesel is disastrous, up to 3x that of fossil diesel. Under these circumstances, would it be reasonable to continue deforestation to plant oil palms or to grow plants used to make polluting fuel when some of the world’s population does not have enough to eat?

The oil giant Total, in its future scenario of 2017 on alternative energy, believes that diesel should remain the best alternative for long-haul transport, followed by fuel cells for regional or medium-haul transport, and that electric would be ideal for local transport. Since biofuels are currently mainly a supplement to diesel, their market share should remain at the margin.

This distribution would have the advantage of creating markets large enough to allow vehicle manufacturers to develop new energy rolling stock while continuing to monetize the volumes produced.

Cost and profitability of the green offering

Our goal as a carrier is to Green Business Maker, by offering our customers the cleanest possible offer, with a service performance that is at least on the same level as now, and at a price that is acceptable to them, and of course making money. This encounters some difficulties to which we must answer:

– These new technologies are still seeking technological maturity, which is not yet the case.

– The cost, which is higher than for diesel equipment, raises the question of reducing the investment capacity of the carrier.

– The more uncertain return on investment, as it is related to various uncertainties: durability and technical obsolescence of the equipment, unknowns; market for resale of rolling stock also unknown; customer acceptance of any rate increases; and also the reliance of this new energy on the fiscal or regulatory positions of governments for or against one or the other.

The future

We carriers are aware that we are at the origin of a important part polluting discharges.

“…heavy vehicles, which represent only 5% of vehicles on the European road network, emit no less than 25% of CO2 self…”

We also know that the expected development of world trade will increase this share if we do not initiate a more positive cycle. It is time for choices and our business will have to go green to survive and thrive in an ecologically economic environment that is still just as competitive.

But beware of scams, false greens, facade virtue, misleading communication.

Let’s not repeat the mistakes of the past that got us where we are today. We were sold that diesel was the universal panacea by favoring it fiscally, touting its many (and real) benefits, while ignoring its equally numerous (and real) drawbacks.

Green Business often reproduces old patterns and cannot escape the temptation of lobbying and misinformation. Let’s be careful not to create a ‘Batterygate’ under the pressure of the emergency.

Patrick Gindt

Patrick Gindt, Managing Director, Yellow T International

the Green Business often reproduces old patterns and does not escape the temptation of lobbying and misinformation. Let’s be careful not to under the pressure of urgency “Battery Port”concerning “Diesel port”

To be credible, the choices presented to us must respect a need for transparency at their real ecological level.

Why not emit more CO?2 with electrical energy if, as a consequence, we let children extract lithium in the mines and if we don’t have solutions for recycling the millions of batteries that accumulate at the end of the life of vehicles?

What’s the point of producing hydrogen for clean driving if the electricity needed for production does not come from clean and renewable energy sources and the final balance between production and use is negative?

We want to make sure that the choices we make effectively and significantly reduce our carbon footprint, by choosing the most efficient formulas across the entire cycle.

(1) Dumont, R. (1974). “Utopia or death!” Paris, France: Threshold.

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