Greenhouse gas emissions from Canada's industrial freight
transportation sector can be cut in half through clean technology,
says new report. Sector generates more than a third of Canada's
MONTREAL, QUEBEC - A new report
from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) says that a
$1.5 billion strategic investment in clean technology would enable
Canada's industrial freight transportation sector to cut its
greenhouse gas emissions by 49% by 2030.
The SD Business Case(TM) on Industrial Freight Transportation
forecasts that without tackling the problem, growth in the sector
will see greenhouse gas emissions increase by 40%. However, such an
investment would not only wipe out that increase, but achieve a 9%
reduction below current sector levels.
The SDTC report shows the potential to build on Canada's core
strengths and improve Canada's competitiveness through the
development, demonstration, and commercialization of new technology
and solutions. It indicates that a $500 million direct investment
by governments would generate an additional $1 billion in private
sector investment for this growing sector that currently provides
more than 440,000 Canadian jobs.
"When Canada's economy grows, the amount of
freight we ship grows, and the current reality is that greenhouse
gas emissions grow too. With strategic investments in clean
technology and infrastructure, this doesn't have to be the case in
the future", said Vicky Sharpe, President and CEO, SDTC. "If we
decrease the energy consumption and emissions associated with
moving freight, we can achieve environmental, economic and societal
sustainability while improving productivity."The SD Business
Case on Industrial Freight Transportation identifies opportunities
for investment in advanced technologies to reduce greenhouse gas
emissions in Canada's industrial transportation sector which
includes: railway, marine, on-road trucking, off-road freight
transportation and intermodal.
Canada's expansive geography and export-heavy market means that
industrial transportation activities contribute approximately 37%
to Canada's total energy-related GHG emissions. Approximately half
of this energy consumption is dominated by freight transport.
"We need a collective approach to reducing the greenhouse gas
emissions of freight transportation", said Rick Whittaker, Vice
President, Investments and Chief Technology Officer, SDTC. "An
optimal solution involves technology development within each mode
of transportation coupled with strategic deployments of
infrastructure to improve energy efficiency and reduce GHG
The full report is available in the Knowledge Centre section of
the SDTC website at www.sdtc.ca :
The SD Business Case on Industrial Freight Transportation is the
sixth in a series of reports produced by SDTC. These reports are
the result of extensive consultations with industry, policy makers
and academia. This input is analyzed along with market data and
current reports and studies to arrive at an investment report that
creates a common vision of market potential. These reports are used
to guide the investment decisions of SDTC. Previous SD Business
Case reports addressed the subjects of Eco-Efficiency in Commercial
Buildings, Renewable Electricity, Clean Conventional Fuels,
Biofuels, and Hydrogen. They are all available in the Knowledge
Centre at www.sdtc.ca : .
This SD Business Case focuses on the environmental, economic and
social impacts of the Canadian industrial freight transportation
sector. It addresses the potential introduction of sustainable
technology and infrastructure to counter the negative impacts
associated with energy consumption such as greenhouse gas (GHG) and
criteria air contaminant (CAC) emissions, as well as impacts
related to soil and water quality.
The report identified common barriers or needs in each sector -
non-technical and technical alike - that highlight areas in which
government and industry both have roles to play.
1. Financial risk is a substantial
barrier to technology development and uptake in the industrial
transportation sector. Fleet renewal is capital intensive and
investments in Research, Development & Commercialization are
marginal or low in the industrial transportation sector.
2. A long-term price signal is lacking, undermining the motivation
to change. Emissions reductions are not effectively monetized and
fluctuating fuel prices contribute to uncertainty and delayed
action, which further compromises competitiveness in the sector
when prices increase.
3. Information gathering, reporting and sharing is fragmented or
non-existent. Not only does this present sector knowledge gaps,
which limit informed decision-making at the company-level and
efficient logistics at the shipper-level, it undermines effective
government policy and strategic investment in infrastructure.
4. Regulations and standards are needed to motivate technology
development and uptake where market forces fail to generate the
appropriate signals. In addition, thoughtful and judicious
alignment of regulations and standards can address barriers arising
from regulatory discontinuities across service areas, particularly
where operational efficiencies are at issue.
1. Energy Supply - The development
and supply of alternatives to fossil fuel based energy
2. Energy Storage - Development of advanced chemistries and
mechanics to enable lower cost, reliable, high performance energy
storage and recovery systems.
3. Energy Conversion - Development of pre- and post-combustion
emission reduction technologies, on-board systems to limit the
release of vehicle waste streams, optimization of on-board
auxiliary systems, advances to existing primary driver technology
and the development of advanced alternative primary drive systems
to decrease system inefficiencies and energy losses.
4. Vehicle Design - The introduction of advanced technologies and
alternative vehicle designs aimed at increasing overall vehicle
efficiency through light-weighting strategies and advanced aero-
5. Logistics, Communications and System Optimization - Real time
communications and data acquisition technology to enable effective
logistical planning and route optimization while providing operator