Unilever is running a pilot in the Netherlands to test battery-powered refrigeration in trucks. If successful, it could provide a new solution for lowering the environmental impact of refrigerated products.
Diesel engines have long been the default solution to power the cooling systems in refrigerated trailers. While the emissions from the vehicles themselves are regulated and have shown improvement over the past few decades, refrigerated transport is currently unregulated and therefore improvable.
That’s why we are proud that TIP TRailer Services has chosen one of our vehicles for this nine-month pilot in the Netherlands that Unilever is demanding. They will test a breakthrough innovation in temperature-controlled transport, replacing the diesel refrigeration in four trailers with zero-emission battery-electric prototypes.
The system – which keeps freight chilled at temperatures down to -25°C – will be tested to run entirely on renewable electricity. If successful, the technology could help them lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the ‘cold chain’: in both transportation and products refrigeration.
Moreover, it could save up to 25 tonnes of CO2 per trailer annually, with air quality benefits for each vehicle equivalent to taking 70 cars off the road for a year.
TIP Trailer Services (with a SOR trailer), green tech experts Maxwell and Spark, and transport company Daily Logistics Group (DLG) has been the partners for this trial.
“With logistics and distribution accounting for around 15% of our emissions, we are moving our cold chain to cleaner sources of energy,” explains Michelle Grose, Unilever Head of Logistics and Fulfilment. “We are partnering with innovators to pioneer new technology and find new solutions. This journey of co-creation will provide us with valuable learnings and insights to help us lower emissions from our vehicle fleet.”
Thank you TIP Trailer Services for chosing SOR vehicles for this important challenge. We move forward with you!