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  • FedEx Corp.

FedEx Express trials 100% renewable diesel in UK linehaul-truck network

Photo: FedEx Corp.

FedEx Express Europe, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. and the world’s largest express transportation company, has begun trialing hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO), also known as renewable diesel, to fuel five of its company-owned trucks in the U.K.

Last November, FedEx Express launched the use of renewable diesel to fuel heavyweight, long-distance vehicles in the Netherlands as a more environmentally favorable alternative to fossil fuels.

With the deployment of this new 100 percent HVO fuel, the U.K. becomes the next part of the FedEx network in the region to start trialing the use of renewable fuel.

The decarbonization of the heavyweight transport sector is recognized as more challenging than the parcel pick-up and delivery sector, where FedEx Express has already outlined its goal to transition to a fully electric fleet by 2040.

Finding a viable energy alternative to fossil fuels is more difficult with bigger vehicles that also tend to travel longer distances.

“Using synthetically made diesel offers an interim solution with the promising ability to drive down ‘well-to wheel’ carbon emissions by as much as 80 percent to 90 percent per liter,” said Louise Whitehouse, managing director of fleet maintenance with FedEx Express Europe. “It means that while other technological solutions are still being developed to help the industry transition away from using fossil fuels altogether, we can already make decisions to influence and reduce our scope 1 carbon emissions in our linehaul-truck network—those generated by our owned vehicles.”

The FedEx goal to achieve carbon-neutral operations globally by 2040, announced in March 2021, includes all FedEx owned and operated transportation including parcel pick-up and delivery, its extensive European linehaul-truck network, and aircraft.

It also includes the company’s scope 3 emissions that are generated by contracted transportation services that play a part in the FedEx network.

By demonstrating support and adoption of diesel alternatives, FedEx is striving to make alternative fuels more viable, scalable and ultimately accessible across the industry as solutions to help decarbonize hard-to-abate transportation modalities in Europe.

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