Good News for Utrecht’s Cargohopper! The solar-powered electric mini delivery truck has been nominated along with 100 other cutting-edge sustainable best practice, knowledge and technology solutions for this year's International Sustainia100 award.
Easy, fast, and reliable delivery is essential to keep the commercial heart of a city alive. Due to restricted delivery hours, hard to access inner-city areas, congestion and environmental regulations, ensuring the supply of goods isn’t easy. On top of that, roughly 4.6 million people die every year from causes directly attributable to air pollution, which is to a large part caused by motorised vehicles. Small solar-powered electric vehicles like the Cargohopper combined with innovative infrastructure solutions could make cities around the world more liveable and yield substantial environmental benefits. In Utrecht, conventional trucks deliver goods to a distribution center outside the city. Here, goods are pre-loaded in trailer-sized boxes and lifted into the Cargohopper, which takes goods to the city center. By hauling cardboard and paper for recycling on its return journeys, the Cargohopper is never empty. Results for Cargohopper 1 show an: An economic saving of roughly 5,200 gallons of diesel annually by taking conventional vehicles off the streets. An environmental benefit of roughly 33 tons of CO2-savings per year by swapping fossil-fuel powered vehicles for solar-powered ones. The Sustainia100 award highlights the outstanding performances and global benefits made possible by people, companies, communities, and organisations building sustainable societies of tomorrow. The winners are selected by a high-level committee of global sustainability leaders and will be announced at the Global Sustainability Forum in Copenhagen in September 2012. Sustainia is a consortium of partners representing civil society, businesses and experts, developed by the Scandinavian think tank Monday Morning in a collaborative effort with global companies and foundations (inc. Microsoft and IKEA). The Sustainia100 sustainable technologies and solutions were also presented to decision makers at the UN Rio+20 conference in June to inspire the discussions. For more information about the award, visit www.sustainia.me
Author: Fatima Essanoussi