Environmentally-sustainable transportation has become a key focus for organizations, governments and entire countries, all of which are placing a larger emphasis on reducing their carbon footprints. As consumers demand to know how their products are made, distributed and delivered—and with a sharper eye on environmental sustainability and social responsibility—companies are responding by implementing more eco-friendly transportation options into their fleets.
Already meeting Euro 6 emissions standards with its global fleet, DB Schenker is now moving forward with electric trucks in countries like Brazil, where it is the first global logistics provider to use these trucks for deliveries. Part of DB Schenker’s Runway Product, the first electric truck is on the road and being used to deliver goods to, from and between luxury retail stores.
“Our customers are paying more attention than ever to environmental and sustainability initiatives and count on their Logistics Provider to support their efforts to be greener” said Luís Marques, CEO DB Schenker Brazil. “We, at DB Schenker, are very pleased that our Sustainability Initiatives are providing our customers the positive impacts they expect on their supply chain solutions.”
Taking a Successful Logistics Model to New Heights
DB Schenker’s Runway Product has taken the logistics provider’s existing, successful luxury logistics model to new heights. With a dedicated fashion desk staffed with 70 professionals, personnel who are outfitted with sustainable uniforms, and a diverse team of drivers that includes both women and men, the company is answering its luxury customers’ requests for an upscale logistics and transportation offering.
While adding new electric vehicles to its fleet, DB Schenker is also using sustainable uniforms, hiring more female delivery drivers, and offering more services like store-to-store delivery options for customers in the fashion and luxury retail industry. “With companies moving product between their retail locations,” said Andre Aragao, National Key Account Manager, VM Fashion and Retail, “we expect to see high demand for this service in the coming months.”
The hard work has paid off for DB Schenker Brazil, which is the first logistics provider to add electric trucks to its fleet. And while the country’s EV charging infrastructure is not yet fully developed—a reality that makes city-to-city transport in Brazil difficult, and mainly due to the country’s geographical expanse—Aragao envisions a time when electric trucks are a mainstay for transportation across Brazil.
“This isn’t just about adding EVs to a fleet; it’s about the overall positive impact that doing so will have on Brazil as a country,” he explained. “We’re proud to be the first ones to make this move and to be the company that’s spearheading a movement to get more sustainable trucks and manage even longer deliveries in the country.”
Neutralizing Carbon Emissions
Acknowledging that it will take time to shift an entire fleet of vehicles over to electric power, DB Schenker Brazil is now developing a carbon compensation program for luxury retail customers that want to do more to reduce their carbon footprints. Focused on neutralizing
carbon emissions, carbon compensation programs allow companies to invest in carbon offset projects in order to balance their carbon footprints (e.g., a retailer may invest in programs to offset its employees’ air travel or the carbon required to deliver their products).
“Since we don’t have a 100% electric fleet right now, we still have to use gas-powered trucks,” Aragao explained. “We want to offset this by allowing customers to participate in carbon compensation programs. That way, everyone can do their part in creating more environmentally-friendly transportation options and more sustainable supply chains.”
Also as part of the its Phase II Runway Product rollout, DB Schenker Brazil is providing service between its luxury customers’ mall stores. It also just welcomed its first customer for a new fashion warehouse designed specifically for luxury brands. The space is currently being renovated and styled to reflect the brand itself, and includes a clothing-hanging area, temperature-controlled space and a high degree of security and surveillance.