DHL Supply Chain advances sustainability efforts with 50 electric yard trucks

DHL Supply Chain has introduced new electric yard trucks to its fleet. This move is part of DHL’s ongoing commitment to sustainability, which includes reducing its logistics-related greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.

Electric yard trucks move trailers around yards and distribution centers and offer several benefits over traditional diesel-powered yard trucks. Not only do they generate zero emissions, but they also provide a quieter and more efficient operation, reducing noise pollution and operating overhead primarily through lower maintenance and energy costs. Additionally, the trucks have regenerative braking, which recaptures energy and reduces wear and tear on the braking system.

“As a leader in logistics, we recognize the impact our operations have on the environment, and we are committed to finding sustainable solutions that reduce our carbon footprint. Integrating these 50 electric yard trucks into our fleet is an example of how we are deploying green technologies at every step within our overall supply chain, which will be critical to achieving our ambitious sustainability goals.” says Scott Sureddin, CEO, DHL Supply Chain.

While diesel yard trucks often operate within a small, contained area, two of these vehicles can emit as many CO2 emissions as one Class 8 over-the-road truck. For this reason, among others, DHL Supply Chain, in April 2022, committed to making EV yard trucks the standard within its North American operations, cancelling any further orders for diesel yard trucks. Since then, the company has saved over 45,000 gallons of diesel, equating to a reduction of 500 tons of CO2 emissions or 2,500 tons annually. The next milestone will be to expand the fleet to over 100 EV yard trucks which will produce annual CO2 emissions savings of more than 5,000 tons, then phase out all diesel yard trucks by the end of 2025 in a final step.

The EV yard trucks join a list of sustainability successes for DHL Supply Chain, including using 100% renewable electricity in all its owned and leased buildings since 2014, phasing out LPG powered material handling equipment such as forklifts replacing them with EV MHE, and employing AI to optimize packaging solutions which minimizes waste and CO2 emissions.

The company is also looking to take its EV yard truck success on the road and is awaiting delivery of 13 Class 8 EV trucks in 2023 as a starting point for a larger rollout of zero- or near zero emission vehicles to cover 30% of its fleet by 2030.

Source: DHL Express