In plans to reduce emissions in the United Kingdom, £20 million funding has been made available for a Low Emission Freight and Logistics Trial.
The freight industry accounts for around 30% of the UK’s CO2 transport emissions alone and the funding will help fleets get their new vehicles on the road.
The aim of the Low Emission Freight and Logistics Trial is to demonstrate new and inventive technologies which will hopefully encourage the widespread introduction of low and zero emission vehicles to fleets across the UK.
The funding is being delivered by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) and Innovative UK.
Transport Minister John Hayes said:
“Each one of these successful projects will help cut vehicle emissions, improving air quality and reducing pollution in towns and cities.”
“This is yet another important step towards this government’s commitment to reduce carbon emissions from transport to help tackle climate change.”
“We are already making headway through our investment in low emission vehicles, greener public transport and walking and cycling, as well as grants for innovative advanced biofuels projects.”
Innovate UK’s Manufacturing and Materials Director Simon Edmonds said:
“These 20 projects around the UK will spearhead the uptake of the next generation of innovative low emission freight and fleet vehicles.”
“The impact will benefit the environment, particularly in our big cities.”
“It builds on the results of previous low carbon projects with OLEV, and the data collected from this new trial will be invaluable to future development and commercialisation of these vital technologies.”
The programme is designed to help the UK meet its CO2 reduction targets and represents another huge step in the right direction for the governments plans for all new cars and vans to be zero emission by 2040.
The table below shows the different areas where the funding will be spent and what different organisations will be researching to reduce emissions.
Updated – First two £20m Low Emission Freight and Logistics Trial have hit the road
From the £20 million funded trials, the first two projects are now in the process of hitting the roads across the UK. As previously stated, the funding was announced at the Sustainable Road Transport Conference in January, which has been awarded to 20 firms who each set out plans for innovative ways of deploying low & zero-emission vehicles.
The first project to hit the road was the ‘Dedicated to Gas’ trial led by Air Liquide Group. Their trial was designed for gas HGV’s ranging from 12 to 44 tonnes. Large fleet operators including Wincanton, ASDA and Howard Tenens are to test the effectiveness of 81 dedicated gas-powered heavy good vehicles new to the UK market as well as 5 new cryogenic transport refrigeration units.
The trial will road-test them across 10 different vehicle configurations, creating a wealth of valuable data on vehicle performance, fuel efficiency, reliability and cost. Trial vehicles running on compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) are expected to reduce CO2e emissions by up to 8 per cent, and those run on bio-methane can expect to see a 70 per cent reduction in CO2e emissions, compared to a similarly sized diesel HGV.
The trial will also test the effectiveness of a new cryogenic TRU. The liquid nitrogen cooling system represents a zero-tailpipe emissions solution for refrigeration units, further reducing the overall CO2e and air quality emissions impact of HGVs.
The second project to hit the road from Low Emission Freight and Logistics Trial is the ‘Kinetic Energy Recovery System’ (KERS) which will evaluate the technical viability, commercial feasibility and potential emissions benefits of Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems retrofitted onto trailers and rigid HGVs. The project partners are Howdens and Sainsbury’s as the fleet operators, Alternatech as the KERS technology provider, and Imperial College London as the independent academic partner. The aim is to demonstrate emissions, noise and fuel consumption reductions on vehicles enabled by the super-capacitor based KERS. The KERS packages are currently being developed and installed onto the vehicles.
KERS technologies, which harvest the braking energy and exploit it in the acceleration phase, could reduce fuel costs and emissions by 30%, contributing to cleaner and more economical urban freight transport. This project will provide reliable data on the performance of the retrofitted KERS as well as modelling tools for further optimisation. Such data and models can be employed to identify the commercial opportunity and environmental benefits, helping Alternatech to promote, price and market the product accordingly. Howdens and Sainsbury’s will use the trial period to evaluate the economic and CSR benefits of using KERS technology. Finally, Imperial College London will disseminate the project’s findings to policymakers and the freight sector, in addition to scientific publications.