Source: European Logistics Platform, 2021-03-08
At the first webinar organised by the European Logistics Platform (ELP) this year, around 80 EU policymakers and industry representatives met to discuss the necessary requirements to support the uptake of alternative fuels and how to accelerate the deployment of the respective infrastructure across the EU.
Ismail Ertug MEP, Member of the EP TRAN Committee & Vice-President of the S&D Group, opened the webinar by expressing the importance of the upcoming review of the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive (AFID) and its instrumental role in reaching the EU’s decarbonisation objectives. In this regard he emphasised that the European Parliament considers the revisions and initiatives linked to the European Green Deal climate actions and in particular the climate target plan's 55% net reduction target as presented under the Fit for 55 package a priority. As the rapporteur for the upcoming AFID review he stressed that AFID can be considered as the backbone of all ambitious emissions targets and he was hoping for more binding standards for the EU Member States.
Charlotte Nørlund-Matthiessen, Member of Cabinet, Commissioner Adina Vălean, speaking on the Commission’s wide decarbonisation goals in transport, emphasised that by increasing the uptake of renewable and low carbon fuels the Commission also aimed to propose an ambitious revision of AFID. She referred to important initiatives in aviation and shipping and added that the Commission is assessing the need to set up an alliance to support renewable and low carbon fuels in order to support the necessary scale up and build the investment agenda.
Axel Volkery, Team Leader Clean Transport, Unit Sustainable and Intelligent Transport, DG MOVE, noted that the Commission will review the scope of the Directive in view of new emerging technologies whilst ensuring that there is sufficient infrastructure to meet demand. Mr Volkery added that the revision will specifically aim to increase the number of recharging and refuelling points to ensure the full interoperability of infrastructure and use services and to provide adequate information for consumers.
Michael Lohmeier, VP Clean Operations Solutions and Services at Deutsche Post DHL Group, stressed the importance of green energy sources and appropriate infrastructure for decarbonising road transport. Mr Lohmeier highlighted that market available solutions and user demands should drive the transition towards low and zero emissions technologies. He also stressed the importance for financial mechanisms that would support not only the larger companies, but equally smaller sub-contractors in the supply chain in the uptake of sustainable alternative fuels.
Elisabeth Fauvelle Munck af Rosenschöld, Sustainability Manager at IKEA, gave a holistic overview of the ambitions of IKEA to become climate positive throughout the whole value chain by 2030, which in operational terms means reducing transport emissions by 70%. IKEA will switch to alternative fuels and rely as much as possible on intermodal solutions and seek to integrate innovation and collaboration in its decarbonisation agenda. She further highlighted the time perspective of the transition and the need for industry to accelerate its efforts to achieve the ambitious targets, adding that big challenges also bring big opportunities.
Valérie Bouillon-Delporte, Hydrogen Ecosystem Director at Michelin noted that for Michelin the AFID is an important tool to accelerate the transition to zero emissions. Ms Bouillon-Delporte stressed the importance of ensuring connectivity of regions to ensure a towards harmonised deployment of Hydrogen Refuelling Stations across Europe. To illustrate it, she referred to the Zero Emission Valley in Auvergne Rhône Alpes Region in France (The first step toward local involvement in building a hydrogen industry - Mobility ecosystems). She also highlighted the role of consistency of national targets with European objectives and the importance of interoperability of the Hydrogen Refuelling Stations of all networks all over Europe.
In concluding the event, the moderator Raluca Marian, General Delegate of the IRU Brussels Office, reflected on the presentations given by the speakers, welcomed the high level of ambition expressed by both the industry and policymakers that are already exploring how to achieve the necessary targets.
The European Logistics Platform consists of more than twenty industry stakeholders representing a wide variety of actors involved in logistics and supply chains across Europe. Current members are ACEA, Amazon, BDL, CER, CLECAT, Deutsche Bahn, Deutsche Post DHL Group, Duisport, ECG, ERFA, ESC, ESPO, FEPORT, FERRMED, Hutchison Whampoa, IRU, Logistics UK, Michelin, NLA, Port of Rotterdam, TLN, UIRR, Volvo Group.