Environmental Challenge Confronted:
Panalpina's customers are asking Panalpina to support them in their sustainability goals, by providing them with detailed, timely and accurate information about the energy and environmental impacts resulting from the shipments Panalpina provides on their behalf. However, these calculations are complex as the shipments frequently are multi-modal and multi-leg journeys performed mostly by third party carriers.
Panalpina sought a solution whereby they could quickly, accurately and efficiently calculate the energy expended and greenhouse gas emissions resulting from customer shipments. The system needed to be efficient and performed "on demand", as customers requested the data. They system needed to be able to accommodate multi-mode, multi-leg journeys that utilize different vehicles with different capacities and shares allocated to the customers' cargo. Ultimately, the system will be able to provide the data automatically as part of the customer invoicing process.
Best Practice Undertaken:
The system implemented by Panalpina automatically calculates its customers’ transport emissions based on the reporting standard EN 16258, which includes upstream emissions from fuel production, other greenhouse gases besides CO2 and energy consumption. The system utilizes the state-of-the-art tool “EcoTransIT World” , which is used to provide accurate reports for customers so that they can develop effective strategies to reduce the environmental impact of their global transport chains. The system is integrated into Panalpina's own IT system, which provides all necessary shipment information to EcoTransIT servers where sophisticated algorithms are applied to calculate CO2 emissions and other parameters such as particulate emissions as precisely as possible. The results are sent back to Panalpina where all data is stored. Panalpina can then run reports and send them to the customers as needed.
The EcoTransIT system calculates emissions for each shipment including pre- and on-carriage based on distance, weight, transport mode, and deployed vessel or aircraft type. The latter is derived from flight numbers. For air freight, the actual routing – this can involve several airports – is used. Road distances are calculated using a comprehensive geographic information system (GIS ) database, which includes world-wide networks for roads, railways, aviation, sea, and inland waterways. In addition, the GIS database also contains geographic coordinates for over 100,000 location codes such as airports and harbors, and actual road infrastructure in each country. For ocean freight, ship size and speed reductions are considered. Emissions are disclosed as CO2 equivalents (CO2e). CO2 equivalents include other greenhouse gases such as methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) besides CO2.
Panalpina has been one of the first global players to introduce such a sophisticated, automated system to provide its customers with detailed, timely and accurate information about the energy and environmental impacts from their shipments.