Within DHL Freight and Saloodo!: Bridging the Gap to Full Electrification
Our commitment at Saloodo! is to promote eco-friendly practices and support a sustainable economy through our digital logistics platform, with the goal of making a positive impact. As the industry works towards reducing emissions of the transport sector to zero in the long term, we need practical short- to mid-term solutions that can fulfill the needs of different modes of transportation.
To this end, DHL Freight for example has committed to a Green Technology Roadmap that includes various solutions and technologies to explore alternatives to traditional fossil fuels.
Bridge Technologies: Bio-LNG/CNG and Selectively Renewable Diesel HVO
DHL Freight’s roadmap includes shifting to bridge technologies such as Bio-LNG/CNG (Liquefied/ Compressed Natural Gas) and selectively renewable diesel HVO. Bio-natural gas and bio-liquefied natural gas are part of this solution and offer an eco-friendly alternative to fossil fuels.
Battery-Electric Vehicles for Pickup and Delivery: The Ideal Last-Mile Solution
For pickup and delivers purposes, battery-electric vehicles will be introduced across Freight countries over the next years. These vehicles are designed for short-range trips, making them well-suited for battery-fueled solutions that can effectively reduce emissions in e.g. urban areas.
Long-Term Solutions: Shifting to Hydrogen
In the long term, DHL Freight plans to shift to hydrogen as soon as possible. Hydrogen is a sustainable fuel source that can power fuel-cell electric vehicles and specialized internal combustion engines. It can be produced through the electrolysis of water using renewable electricity and can also be used in conjunction with other sustainable energy sources such as solar and wind power to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Pilots and Commitments: Ongoing Efforts to Promote Sustainability
DHL Freight also plans to conduct pilots for battery-electric vehicles for pickup and delivery in cities such as Frankfurt, Germany, and Gothenburg, Sweden, with a goal of shifting to battery-electric for PUD trucks by 2030.
Our Saloodo! team actively supports these initiatives and we strive to assist our customers in making informed, eco-friendly choices for their logistics needs.
That’s why we deep-dive into 4 fuel alternatives:
Biofuels are a promising alternative to fossil fuels, with their main advantage being their widespread availability. They can be produced from fast-growing energy crops such as corn and sugar beet, as well as agricultural and industrial waste.
Blending biofuels with traditional fuels can help reduce local air pollution, limit CO2 emissions, and promote cleaner combustion. Biofuels are also more environmentally friendly, as they are biodegradable and less toxic than fossil fuels.
However, there are sustainability concerns associated with the production of biofuels. If energy crops are not cultivated using sustainable practices, deforestation can occur, releasing greenhouse gases and harming biodiversity. Monocultures can also lead to food and water shortages. Poor irrigation and farming practices can also impact agricultural yields and reduce soil fertility. Additionally, significant amounts of energy are required for crop harvesting and processing
#2 Green electricity
Green electricity is a sustainable alternative to traditional fossil fuels for powering electric trucks. It is generated from renewable sources such as solar, wind, and hydro power. Compared to diesel, green electricity is cheaper, costing only half as much.
Green electricity can be used to power two types of electric trucks: battery electric and direct electric cable systems. Battery electric vehicles are suitable for lower range and payload, respectively. Directly electrified vehicles like pantographs, on the other hand, can handle higher range, but are limited on a given infrastructure and are available only on fixed routes, making their operation more complex.
But to be honest, the adoption of green electricity in the logistics industry is not without challenges. It requires new truck designs, equipment, and infrastructure, which can be costly for businesses to implement. The range of battery electric vehicles is also limited, which can be a challenge for long-distance hauls. Moreover, the supply of green electricity is not yet sufficient to meet the demand for electric trucks, which requires significant investment in renewable energy infrastructure.
#3 Green hydrogen
Green hydrogen is a promising fuel source for powering fuel-cell electric vehicles and specialized internal combustion engines. Produced through the electrolysis of water using renewable electricity, green hydrogen is a sustainable alternative to traditional fossil fuels. It can also be used in conjunction with other sustainable energy sources such as solar and wind power to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Green hydrogen has many benefits, such as its ability to power fuel-cell electric vehicles and specialized internal combustion engines. It has an equivalent cost to diesel, making it a cost-effective alternative to traditional fuels. Furthermore, green hydrogen can be produced in locations with abundant renewable electricity, reducing the dependence on fossil fuels and promoting energy security.
There are some tradeoffs associated with the use of green hydrogen. Like other sustainable fuels, it requires new truck designs, equipment, and infrastructure. The operational complexity of green hydrogen-powered vehicles is also high, requiring careful management of the fuel and maintenance of the fuel cell system.
E-diesel is a type of synthetic fuel that can be used in existing diesel engines without requiring any modifications to the engine or fueling infrastructure. It is produced by combining green hydrogen with captured carbon dioxide to create a liquid hydrocarbon that can be used as a drop-in replacement for traditional diesel fuel.
An important benefit of e-diesel to many carriers is, that it can be used in existing diesel engines, making it a viable alternative to traditional diesel fuel without requiring any changes to existing infrastructure or engines. This means that businesses can reduce their carbon footprint without making significant changes to their operations.
However, e-diesel is currently more expensive than traditional diesel fuel, costing twice as much. Its widespread adoption will depend on further development of green hydrogen and carbon-capture technologies. Producing e-diesel requires significant investment in these technologies, which are still in the early stages of development.
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