Ultra low carbon truck strategy launched

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders launched its Ultra Low Carbon Truck strategy at a summit in London. The aim is to help truck makers and operators deliver more […]

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By Janet Knight

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders launched its Ultra Low Carbon Truck strategy at a summit in London.

The aim is to help truck makers and operators deliver more efficiently and lower carbon transport for the UK.

Martin Flach of the SMMT heavy vehicle technical committee said the HGV industry would not invest in low carbon technology unless they make economic business sense.

Hit by the credit crunch, the number of commercial vehicles sold in the UK has halved in the last two years. “We need to look at long term solutions that are commercially viable when it comes to reducing C02 emissions,” said Mr Flach.

He said the industry wants to reduce C02 emissions but needs the Government to establish a clear, long-term strategy to enable ultra low carbon technologies to reach the market.

Although low carbon technology is now available, Mr Flach said existing, more commercially viable technology can improve a truck’s carbon footprint.

Around 5% of the UKs greenhouse emissions are caused by HGVs, therefore, decarbonising road freight transport is key to the Government’s carbon reduction strategy, said Mr Flach.

Truck makers have cut fuel use and emissions by 60% since the 1970s and European truck makers have agreed to cut new truck fuel use by a further 20% per tonne/kilometre by 2020.

In its HGV ultra low carbon strategy the SMMT wants the following:

  • Operators need incentives to use low carbon technologies;
  • A clearly defined measurement of HGV C02 emissions;
  • The benefits of low carbon technology need to be proven;
  • HGV industry should play an active role in assessing policy options, such as alternative fuel;
  • emissions trading and road user charging.