DHL rolls out Manhattan-based “green” fleet

Company officials said this move is driven by a need to reduce the impact of its delivery vehicles on the environment. The new fleet is comprised of 80 vehicles, with 30 American-made, battery powered electric vans and 50 hybrid trucks that will be on Manhattan streets by September.

By ·

Global express delivery and logistics service provider DHL said this week that it is introducing a “green” fleet of commercial delivery vehicles for use in Manhattan.

Company officials said this move is driven by a need to reduce the impact of its delivery vehicles on the environment. The new fleet is comprised of 80 vehicles, with 30 American-made, battery powered electric vans and 50 hybrid trucks that will be on Manhattan streets by September. They added that these vehicles will reduce fossil fuel usage and CO2 emissions by more than 50 percent per year compared to conventional vehicles.

Both types of vehicles in the “green fleet” are being built by hybrid electric and electric commercial vehicle manufacturer Azure Dynamics, with Ford Motor Company producing the vehicles’ chassis.

DHL has been working with Azure since 2008 and pilot tested some of the vehicles in the Boston market, according to DHL Public Relations Manager Robert Mintz.
And he said that this multi-million dollar investment in the modern, environmentally-friendly vehicles is an integral part of DHL’s global GoGreen strategy, which is the goal of improving the company’s carbon efficiency worldwide by 30 percent by 2020, compared to 2007 base levels and was rolled out in 2008.

“As customers worldwide are increasingly demanding greener logistics, sustainable business procedures and initiatives like the one we are launching today allows DHL to serve customers via sustainable solutions and improved resource efficiency,” said Mintz.

A committed focus to a green vehicle fleet is far from new for DHL, as major objective of its GoGreen strategy focuses on adding fuel-efficient, hybrid, electric or aerodynamically modified vehicles for its global fleet, according to DHL. In the last year, DHL said it has already upgraded delivery vehicles in Europe and Asia, as well as Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, and Paraguay.

GoGreen has a general goal for DHL to reduce its carbon footprint for every letter mailed, container shipped, and meter of warehouse space used.

The company’s steps to reduce its carbon footprint, as defined when it was initially introduced,  include: replacing 90 percent of its air fleet with modern, more fuel efficient aircraft, including 48 Boeing 757 Special Freighter modern cargo aircraft, which require 20 percent less fuel per ton transported than the Boeing 727 predecessors; adding aerodynamic winglets to an initial six cargo aircraft to increase the amount of lift generated at the wingtip, which raises carbon efficiency by 2-to-5 percent; increasing the use of alternative fuels and propulsion units with bio-gas fueled heavy duty trucks, delivery vans, and heavy duty trucks with biodiesel fuel blends; using hybrid engines and route planning technologies to reduce fleet fuel consumption; making changes in transportation methods or “modal shifts” from air to road, sea and rail, and road to rail; and route optimization and application of intelligent traffic guidance systems.

Adrian Gonzalez, director of ARC Advisory Group’s Logistics Executive Council, commended Deutsche Post DHL in a previous interview for outlining this program and establishing an aggressive target.

And he also noted that endeavors like this present shippers with options and benefits, too, explaining that many shippers, especially those with a strong commitment to sustainability, expect their suppliers and partners, like logistics service providers, to demonstrate a similar commitment.

“Our investment in these new green vehicles supports a more energy-efficient, low-emissions economy,” said Ian Clough, CEO for DHL Express U.S., in a statement. “Having partnered with American companies also represents an investment in the U.S. economy.”

For related articles, please click here.


About the Author

Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. Contact Jeff Berman

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Article Topics

DHL · Express · Green · Logistics · Sustainability · All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
The View from the New “Single Window”
The single window, officially known as the "International Trade Data System," operates via the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency's Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) platform, and serves as a single point of contact for all trade filings.
Download Today!
From the March 2017 Issue
WMS vendors are stepping up to the plate and developing functionalities and solutions that meet the complex needs of today’s companies. Our top analysts take a peek into these developments and discuss the DC of the future and the software that will support it.
5 Supply Chain Trends Happening Now
2017 Warehouse/DC Equipment Survey: Investment up as service pressures rise
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
2017 Trucking Regulations & Infrastructure Update
In this session our panel brings shippers up to date on the state of transportation regulations. Discussion will revolve around regulatory reform, aspects of the federal highway bill and what the transportation landscape looks like in the early days of the Trump administration.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
LM Exclusive: Major Modes Join E-commerce Mix
While last mile carriers receive much of the attention, the traditional modal heavyweights are in...
ASEAN Logistics: Building Collectively
While most of the world withdraws inward, Southeast Asia is practicing effective cooperation between...

2017 Rate Outlook: Will the pieces fall into place?
Trade and transport analysts see a turnaround in last year’s negative market outlook, but as...
Logistics Management’s Top Logistics News Stories 2016
From mergers and acquisitions to regulation changes, Logistics Management has compiled the most...