Royal Mail: reducing emissions with electric vehicles
Leading postal delivery provider, Royal Mail, is set to deploy 87 new electric vehicles to one of its largest mail centres in London - Mount Pleasant.
To reduce its fleet emissions in the UK capital - London - Royal Mail has added 87 new electric vehicles to its largest mail centre in the area, known as Mount Pleasant, making it one of the largest commercial electric vehicle charging points in London.
Currently, the company has 30 operational vehicles which deliver letters and parcels in selected locations in the capital and surrounding areas. Royal Mail plans to roll out the remaining 57 vehicles during February and March.
The new vehicles include Mercedes-Benz eVito and Peugeot Partner vans which have been specially designed to help postmen and women to complete deliveries securely and sustainably.
Load capacity: 3.7m3 - 6.3m3
The new vehicles form part of Royal Mail’s involvement in the Optimise Prime project - an industry-led, Network Innovation Competition (NIC) funded project, that is investigating the effects of electrical vehicles in the distribution sector.
To date, the Royal Mail has reduced its overall carbon emissions by 29% since 2004 and has one of the UK’s largest ‘feet on the street’ postal network of 90,000 postmen and women.
“As a company, we are committed to making changes to our operations that reduce our environmental impact, while ensuring we continue to meet customer expectations. We are delighted that we can expand our fleet in London with more electric vehicles. This will allow the business to continue to deliver letters and parcels safely, efficiently and in the most environmentally-friendly way possible as we continue to shift to low emission technologies.”
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DHL Claim Multi-Sector Collaboration Key to Fighting COVID
Since January, global logistics leader DHL has distributed more than 200 million doses of the COVID vaccine to 120+ countries around the globe. While the US and UK recently rolled out immunisation plans to most citizens, countries with less developed infrastructure still desperately need more doses. In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which currently has one of the highest per-capita immunisation rates, the government set up storage facilities to cover domestic and international demand. But storage, as we’ve learned, is little help if you can’t transport the goods.
This is where logistics leaders such as DHL make their impact. The company built over 50 new partnerships, bilateral and multilateral, to collaborate with pharmaceutical and private sector firms. With more than 350 DHL centres pressed into service, the group operated 9,000+ flights to ship the vaccine where it needed to go.
With new pandemic knowledge, DHL just released its “Revisiting Pandemic Resilience” white paper, which examined the role of logistics and supply chain companies in handling COVID-19. As Thomas Ellman, Head of Clinical Trials Logistics at DHL, said: “The past one year has highlighted the importance of logistics and supply chain management to manage the pandemic, ensure business continuity and protect public health. It has also shown us that together we are stronger”.
Multisector partnerships, DHL said, enabled rapid, effective vaccine distribution. While international scientists developed a vaccine in record time—five times faster than any other vaccine in history—manufacturers ramped up production and logistics teams rolled out distribution three times faster than expected. When commercial routes faced backups, logistics operators worked with military officers to transport vaccines via helicopters and boats.
In the UAE, the public-private HOPE Consortium distributed billions of COVID-19 doses to its civilians as well as other countries in need by partnering with commercial organisations such as DHL. For the first time, apropo for an unprecedented pandemic, logistics companies made strong connections with public health and government.
“While the race against the virus continues, leveraging the power of such collaborations and data analytics will be key”, said Katja Busch, Chief Commercial Officer DHL and Head of DHL Customer Solutions & Innovation. “We need to remain prepared for high patient and vaccine volumes, maintain logistics infrastructure and capacity, while planning for seasonal fluctuations by providing a stable and well-equipped platform for the years to come”.
How Do We Sustain Immunisation?
By the end of 2021, experts estimate that we need approximately 10 billion doses of vaccines—many of which will be shipped to areas of the world, such as India, South Africa, and Brazil, that lack significant infrastructure. This is perhaps the greatest divide between countries that have rolled out successful immunisation programmes and those that have not. As Busch noted, “the UAE’s significant investments in creating robust air, sea, and land infrastructure facilitated logistics and vaccine distribution, helping us keep supply chains resilient”.
Neither is the novel coronavirus a one-time affair. If predictions hold, COVID will be similar to seasonal colds or the flu: here to stay. When fall comes around each year, governments will need to vaccinate the world as quickly as possible to ensure long-term immunisation against the virus. This time, logistics companies must be better prepared.
Yet global immunisation, year after year, is no small order. To keep reinfection rates low and slow the spread of COVID, governments will likely need 7-9 billion annual doses of the vaccine to meet that mark. And if DHL’s white paper is any judge of success, multi-sector supply chain partnerships will set the gold standard.