Greening Logistics

May 7, 2008
BNSF is aiming for zero emissions, Menlo partners with SmartWay, and congestion charges come under fire as some “green” initiatives hit and some miss.

BNSF Railway Company said it has added capacity that has the potential to reduce emission at its Seattle International Gateway. The intermodal facility will use four wide-span, electric gantry cranes. BNSF says it is the first North American railroad to install the cranes which not only produce zero emissions on site, they allow more flexibility, increase capacity and reducethe need for diesel-powered trucks to move containers within the facility.

Menlo Worldwide, the logistics services arm of Con-way Inc., announced it would increase its use of SmartWay-approved carriers. SmartWay is the US Environmental Protection Agency's program to promote greater energy efficiency by using practices and equipment. “Menlo spends nearly $1 billion on transportation with contract carriers each year,” said Gary Kowalski, COO of Menlo Worldwide Logistics. “Now, with more than 80% of that transportation spend going to SmartWay-approved carriers, we are supporting environmental stewardship throughout the transportation industry.”

While New York shot down a congestion charge for vehicles entering the central business district during peak hours, London retailers reportedly expressed concerns over a proposed change in the UK city's congestion charge. The mayor of London has proposed changing the congestion charge, currently equivalent to about $15 per day, to $48 per day emissions charge for vehicles emitting more than 225g of carbon dioxide.

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