21 April 2023


CLECAT participated this week at the three-day conference organised by Smart Freight Centre which welcomed more than 300 participants. The event was organised to help unite the freight community in its journey towards decarbonizing. With more than 20 sessions on a broad range of topics and issues, the key takeaways in trends for 2023 were for CLECAT the increased interest of the industry on emissions in-setting, demand aggregation to speed up the deployment of zero-emission vehicles and data sharing to drive further the decarbonisation of the supply chain. This is an important evolution from the beginning of the Smart Freight Centre, where everyone discussed how emissions should be calculated in logistics.  

On the first day, Lori Tavasszy, professor in Freight Transport & Logistics at the Delft University of Technology, questioned if the big logistics players and freight forwarders really understood the importance of their role in the decarbonisation pathway. The freight forwarders present at the event, including large and some smaller LSPs, recognised and repeated that they must play a vital role in the decarbonisation of transportation. But the market is fragmented, with a high number of small suppliers and operators which need to be guided through a safe transition of their business models.

Book&Claim as an enabler to lower the barriers on getting the transition rolling was the main topic of day one.   Many discussions debated the questions how this will fuel the transition to a greener future for all transportation modes. Speakers highlighted that Book&Claim will not be limited to sustainable fuels only, as it is the main point of focus when talking about this concept because of the ongoing lack of greener technologies in sea and air transport. Particularly in electrifying trucking Book&Claim models will be the important until the trucking industry and its fragmented landscape is able to switch entirely to Low Emission end-to-end solutions.

The second day of the event was the occasion for the GLEC Community to reconnect and discuss the future of the GLEC Framework. Last month, the ISO 14083:2023 ‘Greenhouse gases — Quantification and reporting of greenhouse gas emissions arising from transport chain operations’ was published, following the acceptance of the norm by 37 countries from all over the world. Built on the work of the GLEC, this new standard will be fully integrated in the next version of the Framework. Further work will be conducted on exploring how to further improve SFC emission data tracking and reporting, as well as developing an SFC assurance scheme for the verification of GHG emission reporting according to the new ISO standard.

The final day of the event focused on the transition towards zero-emission road freight transport. Participants could exchange on the main objectives of the Fleet Electrification Coalition which aims to collectively put a massive number of electric trucks into operation over the next few years, to accelerate the transition towards zero-emission trucking. This was also the opportunity to discuss the current and upcoming regulatory framework designed to drive the transition to zero-emission freight transport, such as the proposed revision of the CO2 standards for trucks or the AFIR. Participants acknowledged that robust and ambitious regulations are needed to create the right incentives to push decarbonisation forward and reach the climate objectives. 

More information on Smart Freight Center is available here