SWA joins new Zero Emission Truck Taskforce

SWA joins new Zero Emission Truck Taskforce

Scottish Wholesale Association (SWA) has joined the Zero Emission Truck Taskforce in Scotland

The SWA – and Chief Executive Colin Smith, who will be its representative – was invited to form part of the new group in recognition of its ongoing work with members as part of its Decarbonisation of the Wholesale Industry project.

The taskforce comprises industry leaders from the road haulage, logistics, manufacturing, energy and finance sectors who will work in partnership to identify and co-design creative and practical solutions to maximising opportunities.

It will also tackle any hurdles in relation to technology, charging infrastructure, costs, finance and operator engagement in the transition to zero-emission trucks.

On the back of this, steps will be set out to highlight how to make a swift transition to new technologies, identifying where further development is required and exploring new business models.

Consultants Mott MacDonald and KPMG are working with Transport Scotland to support the Zero Emission Truck Taskforce which will run until March 2023. All papers and minutes will be available via Zero Emission Truck Taskforce/Transport Scotland.

“We’re working at pace to explore opportunities and find solutions as we start planning the transition to zero-emission trucks so we’re honoured to be invited by the Scottish Government to sit on the Zero Emission Truck Taskforce,” said Smith.

“The SWA recently partnered with Volvo Trucks to offer our members more detailed insight into the electric vehicle and infrastructure market as part of our ‘Decarbonisation of the Wholesale Sector’ project and this was hugely successful, with 19 wholesalers and some of our supplier members participating.

“Members also had the opportunity to road test the UK’s first commercially available fully electric Volvo FL 16t HGV which was brought to the event, at the Donald Malcolm Heritage Centre in Linwood, especially for the SWA.

“The feedback we’ve had since the event has been extremely encouraging and Neil Park, the managing director for Volvo Truck & Bus Centre, North & Scotland, said that his business had taken ‘massive learnings’ from the event which is something he would like to see happened again. He was also impressed with our sector’s proactive approach.

“There’s a lot to take on board as we grapple with how best to achieve zero-emission trucks and it’s our job to help members cut through the myriad information available guide them on the right path to decarbonise their businesses.”

SWA members will also have the chance to join in with sub-working groups that are being formed within the taskforce – with topics ranging from trials and data, to finance and infrastructure.

The SWA has already shared the findings of the first phase of its Decarbonisation of the Wholesale Sector project which focused on our vehicles and fleets, calculating and reporting on the sector’s fleet emissions baseline and producing a fleet emissions roadmap to net zero.

“This project is one of the most detailed undertaken by any sector and is based on real data and evidence, compiled direct from our wholesale members,” Smith added.

“This is an extremely exciting and important time for the SWA and our members as we help shape the future sustainability of our sector and Scotland’s food and drink supply chain.”