Some weeks ago I suggested that post and package deliveries in towns and cities could be made less polluting by using a "last mile" delivery with cargo bikes. I was interested to read that DHL, the German Post logistics company has a pilot scheme in Utrecht, Netherlands and Frankfurt am Main, Germany to test this concept using four wheel recumbent HPVs with electrical assistance.
“DHL Express has already replaced up to 60% of inner-city vehicle
routes in some European countries with cargo bicycles, and we expect
that the City Hub and Cubicycle will both help us to accelerate this
approach in other markets over the next 3-5 years,” said John Pearson,
CEO, DHL Express Europe. “Bicycles offer a number of advantages in
express delivery operations: they can bypass traffic congestion and make
up to two times as many stops per hour than a delivery vehicle. The
total cost of ownership over their lifetime is less than half of a van.
And crucially, they generate zero emissions, which reinforces our own
ongoing program to minimize our environmental footprint and supports
city governments’ efforts to promote sustainable city living.”
The concept of zero pollution is debatable. Obviously the vehicles deliver less pollution in situ, but some of the electricity to charge the batteries will be fossil sourced.
The Cubicycle vehicles used by DHL in these pilot schemes are manufactured by Velove Bikes AB, http://velove.se/.The website offers some interesting ideas about low emission deliveries in towns and cities.
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