Collaborative Public-Private Sector Approaches to Foster Energy Efficient Logistics in the NYC-Albany Corridor
START YEAR: 2017
COMPLETION YEAR: 2021 (estimated)
- José Holguín-Veras,
- Jeffrey Wojtowicz
- Argonne National Laboratory
- George Mason University
- US Department of Energy
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) is leading the “Energy Efficient Logistics: Behavior-Based Policymaking at NYC-Albany Corridor” in collaboration with Argonne National Laboratory, George Mason University and multiple public and private sector organizations operating in the Albany and NYC regions. This project would be led by Dr. Jose Holguin-Veras at RPI. This proposed living lab will: (1) fully exploit behavior-based policymaking approach developed by the team during the NYC Off-Hours Delivery project to reduce the energy consumption of freight activity; (2) design and pilot test Energy Efficient Logistics (EEL) initiatives to simultaneously reduce energy use and emissions, increase profits, and improve quality of life. This high priority work will focus on the vital, yet often neglected, freight sector, with an innovative approach that will yield significant reductions in energy use. A powerful feature of the behavior-based policymaking approach is its business friendly nature. The private sector will be an ally.
Pilot testing will take place within the living lab’s study area—the NYC metro area, the Albany NY region, and the 150-mile freight corridor that connects them. NYC is a dense megalopolis with heavy congestion and multimodal transport. These areas are interdependent and linked by rail, waterways, and trucking. The conditions in the study area represent the needs of large and mid-size metropolitan areas, those most in need of innovative EEL initiatives. The study area offers ideal conditions for an influential living lab.
The chief tenet of this proposal is that EEL can only be achieved through a behavior-based policymaking approach that fosters the adoption of energy efficient supply-side Technologies and Operations (Tech/Ops) and uses Freight Demand Management (FDM) to induce changes in freight demand patterns that reduce energy use and support those energy-efficient Tech/Ops. In this way, policymakers could ensure a long-lasting communion of energy efficient Tech/Ops—Smart Cities, Smart Freight Mobility, connected/autonomous trucks, crowd deliveries, and the like—and the energy saving demand changes—changes in time of delivery, mode, shipment size, frequency, or destination of the delivery—produced by FDM. In addition to producing large energy savings, this approach sets the conditions for Tech/Ops to be financially sustainable in the longer term.
The main goal is to fully exploit behavior-based policymaking approach to reduce freight energy use. This approach exploits synergies between novel supply-side Tech/Ops, and energy efficient freight demand changes that can be realized using FDM. This approach will use the living lab to: gain insight into barriers to energy efficiency; identify ways to overcome those barriers; and demonstrate in real-life the power of EEL initiatives to stakeholders. To achieve this goal, policymaking must: broaden the focus of energy policy, exploit synergies between EEL initiatives, develop suitable analytical tools, gain insight into how to foster energy reducing behavior changes in the participants of supply chains, produce appropriate policy procedures, and foster a transformation of supply chains. The project will the FOA’s and AOI #2’s goals as it will: integrate innovative EEL initiatives into a region’s Smart Mobility environment; demonstrate how policy measures can support successful implementation of EEL initiatives while accounting for local conditions; and develop tools and procedures to allow practitioners assess ROI of these initiatives.
The chief outcomes of the project will be: (1) Produce the first policy guidebook that will provide practitioners with actionable information and a practice-ready approach to foster EEL initiatives at the city, MPO, and State levels; (2) Produce an Integrated Transport-Energy Model (ITEM) to: estimate the impacts of policy measures on adoption of Tech/Ops and demand changes, and accurately quantify energy and GHG impact of EEL initiatives; (3) Broaden focus of freight energy policy from one that concentrates its efforts on carriers to on that focuses on all supply chain participants, encompassing both freight’s supply and demand; and (4) Exploit synergies derived from the use of two of more EEL initiatives to create reinforcing effects, instead of isolated efforts.
- Results from an online survey, implemented by the team on June 2019 to more than 500 frequent e-commerce shoppers, show how delivery lockers and delivery consolidation (delivering multiple orders at the same time) are the strategies with the most acceptance among shoppers to improve sustainability of e-commerce deliveries.
- Traffic simulations show that if ports extended their working hours and stagger the arrival of freight vehicles coming to load and unload, there would be a reduction in fuel consumption to all the vehicles that travel through the area of the port.
- Analysis of an extensive GPS data base of freight vehicles show that vehicles traveling in the New York City metro area emit more pollutants per mile traveled than in the corridor or Capital District. Between, the three geographical areas, the Capital District is the area where freight vehicle are less pollutant.
A new energy efficiency framework was designed to consider the unique aspects of logistics. Six determinants were identified as key
factors for characterizing energy efficiency. (1) Network level efficiency, (2) demand level efficiency, (3) mode/vehicle choice efficiency,(4) routing efficiency, (5) traffic and/or driving efficiency and (6) vehicle efficiency.
Synergy between energy efficiency logistic initiatives can be exploited to exacerbate the potential benefits each initiative has while reducing the adverse effects. For example, a combination of Off-Hour Deliveries (OHD) with electric vehicles is ideal because noise pollution concerns of OHD are reduced with the usage of electric vehicles. At the same time, operational concerns of electric trucks diminish in the off-hours where delivery routes are shorter and more efficient. A virtuous cycle among energy efficiency strategies is the preferred outcome.
A Behavioral Microsimulation that models all freight vehicle activity in the Capital District indicate that locating distribution centers closer to the core of the metropolitan area generates less vehicle miles traveled than locating them in the outskirts of the area.
- Integrative Freight Demand Management in the New York City Metropolitan Area: Implementation Phase – Final Report (.PDF document)
- Off-Hour Delivery Program