Multimodal 2024: Organisers champion net-zero emissions with renewed focus on sustainability


With global logistics emissions set to increase by 42% by 2050, Multimodal will focus its 2024 event on how net-zero targets can be achieved.

The bulk of this year’s conference programme will focus on the topic of sustainability, with keynotes from a stella line-up including Amazon, Pledge, Zeus and the Smart Freight Centre, delivering insights on how the sector can scale up to meet net-zero emissions by 2040.

Amazon leads the way with its conference focus on Multimodal Transportation and Sustainability, tackling how its operations will meet targets. The global business will share how it is leveraging rail & waterborne transportation across its European network, recent key network developments and the challenges the market faces.

Pledge and the Smart Freight Centre (SFC) has partnered to understand whether emissions are on track to meet the goals set by the Paris Agreement. Pledge’s session, Decarbonising the logistics supply chain, what's on the minds of logistics leaders? reveals how the partnership brought together leaders from global logistics firms to discuss the industry’s best routes to decarbonisation. The session will share thoughts on how these targets can be met, discussing ten insights from industry leaders on decarbonisation and how businesses can kick-start a sustainability journey.

December’s COP28 conference saw the publication of a landmark new study outlining the potential of revising the frozen food temperature to -15C. The Cold Chain Federation, DP World and Maersk join to address this with the session, ‘Are we overchilling in the cold chain?’, which assesses the practicalities and emission savings of moving to warmer temperature setpoints. They ask what challenges lie ahead for businesses, governments and regulators seeking to change a standard which has been in place for more than 100 years. 

Will the road freight sector be decarbonised in time to reach net zero? In a panel chaired by the COO of Zeus, Kingfisher PLC, Welch’s Transport and The Centre for Sustainable Road Freight will look at strategies needed to decarbonise scope 3 logistics emissions and the associated reporting directives in Europe and the UK. Barriers to scaling up biofuel use will be addressed along with the opportunities and challenges with electric trucks and charging infrastructure. 

Another key session to attend will be around Sustainable Supply Chains. Consumers are increasingly demanding more sustainable goods, not just when it comes to the carbon footprint but also net biodiversity and recyclability. GXO asks some well-known brands to explain how this is changing their logistics, through modal shift, ethical sourcing and returns management.

The Cold Chain Federation, Chiltern Distribution and Sunswap join to consider the transition to emission free refrigeration on road vehicles. With fleet operators begin to move away from diesel in favour of electric alternatives as a power source for transport refrigeration units, they ask whether the industry is on the cusp of a transformation, or will challenges such as cost, grid connection issues and technological uncertainty stall progress. 

Exhibitors driving sustainability goals

Multimodal brings a range of exhibitors to the NEC, many of whom will be helping visitors further their sustainability goals. These include ABP, AEB, Amazon Freight, APL Logistics, Campus Park, Carbon8 Lighting, CCL Logistics, CEVA, CLdN, CMA CGM, COSCO, DFDS, DP World, Le Shuttle Freight, Ewals, Freightliner, Hapag-Lloyd, Howard Tenens, K+N, Maersk, Malcolm Logistics, Maritime Transport, MSC, ONE, Peel Ports, Pledge, Port of Antwerp Bruges, Port of Tyne, Samskip, Unipart Group, VIIA and Woodland Group.

Multimodal delivering on its sustainability promise

Joining the Net Zero Carbon Events initiative, Multimodal organiser Clarion aims to halve emissions by 2030 and achieve Net Zero by 2045 at the latest. Reflecting this pledge, the event will feature sustainable practices, including collaboration with local Midland's contractors and suppliers and the use of recyclable signage.

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