HUBWAYS demonstrations will take place across several representative operating scenarios in four Business Cases through terminals in Italy, Sweden, Slovenia and Belgium. By allowing the industry stakeholders to drive HUBWAYS, the output solutions will address the real needs of this sector in a cost-effective way. Cooperation with existing research projects will enable evaluation of the approach in the overall context of co-modal transport and will provide data for measuring the actual impact.
EcoHubs provides models and capabilities for cooperation and communication between green hubs stakeholders, plus establishing value added services making co-modal networks attractive to use and, at the same time, contributors to reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants.
The following will be established in order to achieve the goals of the project:
- Cooperative Model for Green Hubs enabling low-carbon, resource-efficient and secure transportation services.
- Ecosystem for electronically connecting multimodal terminal network stakeholders and amplifying their joint capabilities when using the Cooperative Model. The result will be faster communications, shared resources and synchronised actions. An important focus will be integrating information obtained from on-going transport execution (visibility of supply chains) into planning processes (facilitated by hub operators) to ensure the best possible environmental and economic performance.
- Common Value Added Services to be combined with existing services, facilitating end-to-end co-modal, low-CO2transport solutions that maximise utilisation of terminal and logistics resources. Common services will include:
- Intermodal terminal eco-efficiency calculator.
- Integrated competitive services for managing improvements in eco-efficiency.
- Measuring and Benchmarking System to provide the means of long term monitoring of greening activities and disseminating best practices at all supply chain levels and EU regions.
- Four EcoHubs Demonstrators to be used across several representative operating scenarios characteristic of modern intermodal terminals.
Special attention will be paid to building improved understanding of prevailing complexities and business interests and ensuring long term sustainability of project outputs and market take-up based on an inclusive Stakeholder Engagement Strategy emphasizing European wide cooperation both to promote best practices and to support further development and implementation of international standards.
Towards efficient and green freight corridors
Europe needs to boost the capacity of its terminals and ports while optimising their energy use and emissions. An EU initiative provided various technology solutions to address these issues.
According to Europe 2020, freight transport and logistics are key to transforming the EU into a smart, sustainable and inclusive economy. One way to accomplish this is through greening activities that convert transport hubs into low-carbon, resource-efficient and competitive freight corridors.
With this in mind, the EU-funded http://www.ecohubs.eu/ (ECOHUBS) (Environmentally coherent measures and interventions to debottleneck hubs of the multimodal network favoured by seamless flow of goods) project set out to deliver several tools that can increase capacity at ports and terminals, thus leading to considerable reductions in carbon footprint.
Project partners developed a cooperative model that enables low-carbon, resource-efficient and secure transportation services. They created an ecosystem business and information architecture allowing multimodal terminal network stakeholders to connect, exchange information and interact while improving their joint capabilities when using the model. This results in faster communications, shared resources and harmonised actions.
The ECOHUBS team also developed a range of services facilitating end-to-end co-modal, low-carbon transport solutions that maximise the use of terminal and logistics resources. These include a calculator that provides missing carbon footprint information in multimodal terminal networks, integrated competitive services for managing improvements in eco-efficiency and a measuring system for long-term monitoring of greening activities.
Four ECOHUBS demonstrators were validated at modern intermodal terminals in Belgium, Italy, Slovenia and Sweden. The various solutions showed a 20 % increase in terminal capacity and over 50 % reduction in carbon footprint.
ECOHUBS introduced the tools necessary for sustainable freight transport and logistics networks while enhancing their environmental impact. Terminal owners and operators, freight forwarders and shippers now have at their disposal various solutions for seamless cooperation and communication, and services that will make co-modal networks more attractive to use.