Green logistics: The importance of sustainability in logistics processes

In a world increasingly concerned about sustainability and caring for the environment, green logistics has become a highly relevant issue. In this article, we will explore…

On October 16, 2023

In a world increasingly concerned about sustainability and caring for the environment, green logistics has become a highly relevant issue. In this article, we will explore in detail what green logistics is, whether it is the same as sustainable logistics, and specifically discuss FM Logistic’s sustainable logistics. In addition, we will show you the key factors of green logistics, the benefits it entails, and how FM Logistic – international logistics operator applies these principles in its operation.

What is green logistics?

Is it the same as sustainable logistics?

Green logistics and sustainable logistics are closely related, but they are not exactly the same. Both concepts share the idea of ​​minimizing the environmental impact of logistics operations, but focus on slightly different aspects:

  • Green logistic: This term mainly refers to logistics practices that focus on reducing the ecological footprint through actions such as the optimization of transport routes to reduce emissions, the use of more efficient vehicles in terms of fuel consumption, the efficient management of energy in warehouse and logistics services and the adoption of sustainable packaging. Green logistics tends to focus on more specific aspects of logistics operations directly related to the environment.
  • Sustainable Logistics: Sustainable logistics is a broader concept that covers not only the environmental dimension, but also economic and social aspects. In addition to reducing environmental impact, sustainable logistics seeks to consider the long-term viability of logistics operations, taking into account economic and social factors, such as equity, workplace safety and ethics. In short, sustainable logistics encompasses a more holistic approach to sustainability in logistics operations.

Factors of green logistics

Sustainable transport

One of the fundamental pillars of green logistics is sustainable transportation. This involves the use of efficient vehicles in terms of fuel consumption and the optimization of routes to reduce emissions.

Sustainable storage

Sustainable warehousing focuses on using methods and technologies that reduce energy consumption and waste generation in warehouses and distribution centers.

Green loading and unloading

Green logistics is also concerned with processes such as loading and unloading of goods, seeking more efficient and environmentally sustainable ways.

Green packaging

Green packaging refers to choosing sustainable packaging materials and minimizing the use of plastics and other elements harmful to the environment.

Certifications and commitments

Obtaining certifications and committing to sustainable practices are essential steps in green logistics. These actions demonstrate commitment to the environment and social responsibility.

Benefits of sustainable logistics

Sustainable logistics offers a series of benefits both for companies and for the environment and society in general. Some of the most notable benefits are:

  • Reduced operating costs: Route optimization, efficient resource management and waste reduction lead to lower operating costs. Less consumption of fuel, energy and materials means significant savings in the long term.
  • Reduced carbon footprint: By adopting sustainable freight and warehousing services practices, companies can reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, helping to combat climate change and improving the company’s reputation in terms of environmental.
  • Regulatory compliance: Adopting sustainable logistics practices helps companies comply with environmental regulations and standards, avoiding sanctions and fines.
  • Improved corporate image: Companies committed to sustainability are often viewed more positively by consumers and investors, which can increase customer loyalty and attract investment.
  • Greater efficiency in the supply chain: Sustainable logistics involves more efficient management of the supply chain, which reduces delivery times and improves customer satisfaction.
  • Conservation of natural resources: Reducing the consumption of resources such as water, energy and fossil fuels helps conserve these limited resources and protect the environment.
  • Promotion of innovation: The search for sustainable solutions encourages innovation and the adoption of cleaner and more efficient technologies in logistics operations.
  • Improved long-term relationships: Maintaining sustainable practices can strengthen relationships with suppliers, customers, and local communities by demonstrating a commitment to shared values.
  • Adaptation to future changes: Sustainability is at the center of global trends and future regulations. Adopting sustainable practices prepares companies to face future challenges and opportunities.

How is sustainable logistics applied at FM Logistic?

FM Logistic examples of green logistics

  • Bet on green hydrogen: On the FM Logistic platform in Illescas, there is the first hydrogen station in a logistics warehouse in Europe. This facility produces 45 kg of hydrogen per week to supply forklifts converted to green fuel, intended for internal use in the warehouse. In addition, FM Logistic is collaborating in the development of the first hydrogen-powered tractor head in partnership with Técnicas Reunidas.
  • Reinventing Cities: FM Logistic was awarded the “Reinventing Cities” award for its HiLife project. This project involves the construction of an ecological warehouse in the south of Madrid, equipped with a hydrogen generator for its vehicles, which will also be available to the general public.
  • Environmental commitment and emissions reduction: In 2021, FM Logistic committed to establishing emissions reduction targets and joined the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), committing to define greenhouse gas reduction targets through scientific evaluation.
  • Excellence in safety: FM Logistic has implemented a rigorous safety plan with the goal of achieving zero accidents. This has been recognized by the low accident rate recorded in 2019. Work is also being done on the development of the Ergoskel to protect workers from musculoskeletal accidents.
  • Optimizing environmental performance: Throughout the life cycle of your buildings, FM Logistic platforms are designed to optimize environmental and operational performance. This is achieved thanks to the experience of its subsidiary NG Concept, specialized in building engineering. In addition, all FM Logistic facilities in Spain have been powered 100% with renewable energy since the end of 2021. In the Illescas warehouse, photovoltaic panels have been installed on the surface of the building for the purpose of energy self-consumption.
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