Heathrow’s pledge to become the most sustainable airport hub in the world has been bolstered by a new emissions reduction blueprint that puts an emphasis on tackling freight emissions through an online data portal. Operators can use the portal to exchange information about spare vehicle capacity and to negotiate a price for the use of cargo space on viable vehicles such as cargo plans and delivery trucks.
Heathrow’s head of cargo Nick Platts said: “Operating a cleaner, leaner and more efficient freight operation is an essential part of delivering on our ambition to be the best airport in Europe for cargo gateway in the world. This WebPortal can deliver for all. Our cargo partners can reduce their costs, our local communities will experience less congestion and improved air quality, and Heathrow will build on its strength as an airport of choice for cargo.”
The Airport – which handles over 1.5m tonnes of cargo each year – will use the portal in an attempt to reduce the amount of cargo planes and trucks operating around the airport. Currently the fleet accounts for servicing, deliveries and cargo operations. Operators can use the portal to negotiate a price for the use of cargo space on viable vehicles.
Along with the portal – the UK’s first geographically specified system of its kind – Heathrow will introduce an off-airport distribution centre, increased road monitoring and tighter licensing regulations as part of plans to future-proof its freight fleet. The airport is also looking into low-emission vehicles for the future and has already experimented zero-emission, driverless pods for transport.