Imperial Logistics assists its customers in their sustainability efforts by redefining existing supply chain networks with a view to reducing ‘˜dead kilometres’. Technology systems such as i2 Supply Chain Strategist are used to model existing networks.
“A feature that has recently been added allows for the inclusion of carbon emissions in the modelling process. Therefore carbon emissions can be considered in the design stage, to make informed decisions on the impact each scenario/option will have on the environment,’ explains Abrie de Swardt, marketing director, Imperial Logistics.
“By measuring ‘˜extra distance’, logistics practitioners can make better, more informed decisions relating to impactful transportation strategies that will in practice, eliminate waste within the supply chain, from resource deployment to unnecessary routes and fuel consumption. The concept of ‘˜extra distance’ has the potential to substantially drive down greenhouse gas (GHG) levels emitted through transportation, while simultaneously unlocking supply chain cost savings,’ he says.
Through improved transport planning, one company decreased ‘˜extra distance’ within the supply chain by a further 5.9%, from 6.7% to 0.8% compared to the first phase of this project.
“This represents an additional cost saving of around R20 million and the elimination of 518 tons in CO2 emissions between the project phases in 2009 and 2010,’ adds Swardt. “A second company faced an interesting challenge, with an associated variable cost of R2 million attributed to ‘˜extra distance’, of which 75% thereof was directly generated by customer behaviour. 16.8% of the distance travelled was ‘˜extra distance’. It was found that a 19% transportation saving could be realised by cutting out these kilometres.’