There’s only one goal for 21st-century delivery vans: “deliver exactly what I paid for to my doorstep ASAP!”. With the rise of e-commerce and the internet, nobody wants to wait. Do you?
According to this report, global parcel shipping volume in 2022 amounted to over 161 billion. In less than six years, this volume is expected to reach 256 billion parcels shipped in 2027, at a compound annual growth rate of 59 percent. In the US alone, parcel shipping volume reached 21.2 billion parcels in 2022.
To fulfil this intense delivery demands of customers, leading delivery brands like Amazon, UPS and DHL have deployed thousands of delivery vans designed to be swift, precise and customer-personalized, especially in highly populated cities where the bulk of their orders come from.
By doing so, delivery vehicles running on fossil fuels (gasoline or diesel) have become highly responsible for air (carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide and particulate matter) and noise pollution in cities like Los Angeles, New York, and Amsterdam where 60% of the human population are predicted to live in by 2023.
According to the EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency), the transportation sector contributed 28% of 2021 greenhouse gas emissions with delivery vans playing a huge role in this. Also, medium and heavy-duty trucks including those used for delivery were responsible for 23% of the transportation sector’s CO2 emissions in 2021.
On the last physical line of e-commerce, delivery vans are consistently answering online orders of millions of customers expecting more control and faster deliveries. This trend is backed by this report which predicts global e-commerce sales growth will surpass $8 trillion for the the very first time by 2027.
According to this report from the World Economic Forum, (The Future of the Last-Mile Ecosystem), the number of delivery vehicles in the top 100 cities globally will increase by 36% in 2030 without any intervention. Consequently, emissions from delivery traffic will increase by 32% or 6 million tonnes.
It’s clear to everyone, that something needs to change – e-commerce needs to go green.
In this article, we will explore how electric vehicles can serve as facilitators for environmentally friendly shipping.
Battery Intelligence: Revolutionizing Electric Vehicle Technology
Within every smart, efficient and cool electric vehicle lies a battery. This battery plays the same role as a traditional gasoline or diesel-powered engine by storing and supplying energy to an electric motor. The power of the electric battery is pretty similar to the power of a typical phone battery except it’s eco-friendly, doesn’t need gas pumps, and is incredibly efficient compared to traditional engines.
According to this analysis by Transport and Energy, batteries of electric cars typically made from lithium will use 58% less energy than a petrol car over its lifetime and emit 64% less carbon dioxide.
Although there have been counter-arguments that the manufacturing of electric battery also use fossil fuels and produce carbon emissions, it pales in comparison to a gasoline or diesel-powered car. Also, the operational cost and carbon emissions from refining crude oil to create gasoline and diesel make this argument hypocritical.
In this report by Laucien Matthieu, “Over its lifetime, an average fossil-fuel car burns the equivalent of a stack of oil barrels 25 storeys high. If you take into account the recycling of battery materials, only around 30kg of metals would be lost – roughly the size of a football.”
Innovations in Battery Technology for improved efficiency and sustainability
Intelligence Battery Management Systems play a key role in ensuring the efficiency and long-term use of electric batteries. They are the personal trainers of electric batteries – consistently monitoring electric battery’s health, pre-emptive analytics that nip any potential issues in the bud and remote diagnostics that allow for proactive maintenance.
At the peak of Intelligence Battery Management Systems globally is Elysia battery intelligence which uses WAE world-class battery software to extend life, enhance safety, and unlock the performance of electric batteries.
Elysia suites comprise two main components – Elysia Cloud Platform and Elysia Embedded.
Elysia Cloud Platform directly converts battery data into actionable insights allowing clients to view information on the battery’s health, degradation verification, and in-life fault-finding in real-time.
Elysia Embedded combines a set of advanced battery management algorithms running on a battery management system (BMS) which can increase battery lifespan by up to 30%, boost battery range by 10%, significantly reduce fast charging time and raise peak power output when compared to conventional battery management algorithms.
Elysia’s battery intelligence systems enable:
- Deeper battery analytical insight,
- Faster charging speeds,
- Management, optimization and enhancement of battery performance.
For e-commerce brands, OEMs and EV fleet operators, and battery asset financiers looking for innovative battery intelligence management granting never-before-seen real-time monitoring, management, optimization and enhanced performance of electric batteries throughout the electric vehicle’s life span, Elysia is an amazing choice.
Advantages of intelligent battery management systems
Apart from real-time eagle-eyed precise monitoring of electric batteries, Intelligence Battery Management Systems like Elysia automatically know when to charge, how much is needed to charge them and when to disconnect power to the electric motor.
Also, they provide proactive maintenance alerts, strategic route planning to avoid traffic congestion, enhanced safety by keeping batteries within the right temperature and voltage, adaptability to weather conditions, low-cost savings, and insights into your vehicle’s energy consumption, charging patterns, and overall performance.
Automotive e-commerce platforms: Paving the way for green shipping
Automotive e-commerce is the direct consequence of technology and artificial intelligence plus the COVID-19 pandemic. Customers are shifting towards an automotive e-commerce platform where they can view, choose, compare and customize their cars without leaving the comfort of their sofas.
According to Statistica, global automotive e-commerce was valued at a market size of 38.67 billion U.S. dollars and is forecast to spike in the next ten years, up by a compound annual growth rate of 17.5 per cent to around 176.24 billion U.S. dollars in 2031.
Integration of electric vehicles into e-commerce logistics
Automotive e-commerce platforms are actively offering electrical vehicles to customers and actively integrating them into the logistics supply chain. Beyond being used as delivery vehicles, electric batteries and intelligent battery management systems are taken over as eco-friendly machines of manufacturing plants and distribution centres. It goes beyond reducing carbon emissions, air and noise pollution, traffic congestion and delivery efficiency. Electric vehicles are engaging in a complete overhaul of how we perceive e-commerce logistics.
How electric vehicles are driving green e-commerce
To satisfy the demand for faster delivery without sacrificing the environment, electric vehicles are rapidly replacing Internal Combustible Engine Vehicles (ICEV) fuelled by gasoline and diesel.
Driven by global pressure to reduce carbon emissions, the need to enhance logistics and last-mile delivery while reducing noise pollution and traffic congestion, government-backed loans, and lower operating costs, leading e-commerce and logistic giants across the world are rapidly integrating electric vehicles for environmentally friendly shipping.
Leading e-commerce brand Amazon promises to run on 100% renewable energy by 2030 and is currently working with Rivian Automotive Inc. to include 100,000 battery-electric delivery vans for its Prime deliveries. Walmart-owned Flipkart in August 2020, joined the Climate Group’s global electric mobility initiative, EV100.
Also targeting a road to zero emission by 2040, Walmart aims at operating a 100% fleet of all-electric vehicles powered by 100% renewable energy. Within Europe, e-commerce brands like IKEA, Otto Group, Zalando, Rewe, and the UK’s clothing giant – Marks and Spencer – have all made great strides in incorporating electric vehicles into their shipping.
Challenges of electric vehicles
While electric vehicles are gaining strides, especially within the logistics industry, there are still challenges that are obstructing its global adoption.
- The anxiety of running out of battery before a recharge is possible for some customers,
- Limited charging infrastructure,
- Longer charging time than traditional refuelling at a gas station,
- The higher initial cost of purchase compared to traditional vehicles,
- Battery replacement,
- Multiple charging standards,
- Limited design options,
- An unconscious lack of performance bias among customers,
- The carbon emissions and dependence on rare earth elements for the manufacturing of electric batteries.
Despite these challenges, new technological developments, progressive government policy and financial incentives plus global awareness are moving the electric vehicle advancement onward.
The Integration of Electric Vehicles for Environmentally Friendly Shipping
With the global rise of e-commerce, delivery vans have to move even faster to meet the unending desire for almost instant delivery from customers.
To meet up the rising global parcel shipping industry needs while aiming for zero-emission, low operational cost and efficient delivery, e-commerce giants like Amazon are rapidly adding electric vehicles to their shipping fleets.
Although challenges like charging infrastructure exist, intelligent battery management systems and automotive e-commerce platforms are driving the integration of electric vehicles for environmentally friendly shipping forward.
So, fasten your seat belt, electric vehicles are here to paint our cities and e-commerce green!
Isaac Adewumi is a dedicated storyteller with a relentless passion for crafting perfect words. His days are immersed in creating engaging, easy-to-understand copy to drive leads, user onboarding, and customer retention for B2B, B2C, and SaaS brands.
Under surveillance, you’d catch him deeply researching client briefs, pondering creative blog intros, and writing compelling articles and email copy.
Inspired by marketing legends like Chase Dimond, he immerses himself in endless marketing copy, poetry writing, solo chess sessions, and Fantasy Premier League videos—all accompanied by the soothing tones of slow classical music on Spotify.
You can connect with him on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/isaac-adewumi-47ab77148/