Freight Transport Association (FTA) has announced it is proud to be a consortium member of the new Research Centre for Sustainable Road Freight (SRF), saying that it is pleased to back the £6m UK initiative to minimise the environmental impact of road freight transport and providing opportunities for decarbonising freight.
FTA supports the new initiative of the Centre which will develop innovative technical operational solutions to road freight transport challenges and focus on tactics and strategies to meet Government emissions reduction targets for the road freight sector.
The Centre for Sustainable Road Freight is a collaboration between Heriot-Watt University Logistics Research Centre and the University of Cambridge Engineering Department – bringing together road freight vehicle engineering expertise from Cambridge and logistics expertise from Heriot-Watt: to explore ways to make road freight economically, socially and environmentally sustainable.
The new venture, initially funded for five years, has been co-funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, which has provided £4.4 million, and a new industry consortium (including FTA), which has contributed £1.4 million.
The Logistics Carbon Reduction Scheme (LCRS) managed by FTA will be working with the Centre for Sustainable Road Freight, to develop a Roadmap to indicate where the greatest carbon savings can be made within logistics operations in order for the sector to continue to reduce carbon emissions. The Roadmap will focus on both operational and technological measures and will also provide further evidence to Government of the continued potential for the logistics sector to decarbonise.
James Hookham, FTA Director of Policy & Communications says:
"FTA is delighted to be a consortium member of the Centre for Sustainable Road Freight which will lead on relevant and much needed research projects to identify the best decarbonisation options for the sector. The level of support from operators and retailers and the calibre of the academics involved is also impressive."
Hookham added: "We need to answer the big questions in transport in order to contribute to national climate change reduction targets. For instance, we need to solve the issue of empty running; to know where emissions legislation will go next; and to know what impact specific decarbonisation interventions will have if they achieve widespread adoption."
The Centre for Sustainable Road Freight will have a range of research projects including optimising long haul transport which will look at developing ultra-lightweight and higher-capacity vehicles; optimising the rolling resistance of tyres; and a study of airflow around and under vehicles to perfect aerodynamics. Studies will also focus on sustainable urban freight to include finding the most fuel-efficient ways to organise logistics in cities; the influence of driver behaviour; and utilising alternative fuels, such as natural gas.