Sustainability is a buzzword that is being thrown around quite a lot lately, but what does it really refer to and how does it apply to the freight industry?
While it can have multiple definitions, the term “sustainability” generally refers to the ability of an industry to approach a net-zero impact on the environment while still maintaining profitability. Most often people equate “sustainability” with just being environmentally friendly, but businesses must still keep up their profits while being environmentally friendly, otherwise it’s still not a sustainable business model. By achieving this equilibrium of being environmentally friendly and profitable, businesses can run indefinitely at a sustainable pace.
The trouble that is most often found in reaching a sustainable business model is having a net-zero effect on the environment can often be costly for most businesses. This is especially true in the shipping industry, which is heavily dependent on the usage of fossil fuels – which is detrimental to the environment. To move away from fossil fuels for freight carriers is an extremely costly venture, so businesses need to take careful precautions to make sure that the company can afford the changes and won’t end up running at a negative profit.
What is making this transition easier for those in the transport industry is the push for automotive companies to develop more heavy-duty hybrid or full electric trucks. Tesla has most notably been in the news for their soon-to-be-released fully electric semi-truck, which hasn’t even been released to date but has received a large demand for pre-orders. Shipping companies are flocking in droves and lining up to make sure they can get these trucks as soon as they are available. Not only due to the environmental factors drive the purchase, but also because it removes the expensive dependency on fossil fuels.
For the most part, shipping companies are now finding that the increasingly progressive shipping technology is soon going to make it so that moving to a sustainable, green shipping solution is going to also allow them to save money. It is becoming a win-win situation that is going to benefit both the environment and the company profit margins.