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Calculating GHG emissions of Regular and Express delivery services

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A Comparison of Regular and Express Delivery Services Regards to Their GHG Emissions as Multi-transport systems

Regular and express delivery services are used to improve operations and movement of products. Regular services cannot be relied upon when delivering products that are urgent, or been transported for long distances. On the other hand, the express delivery services are perfect when delivering urgent products or those that are been transported for longer distances. Thus, the main problem related to both regular and express delivery systems is the process of transportation that each undertakes. Express are direct transportation modes when regular modes, mainly make few stops on delivering or deliver many products using one route to different destinations. Kachitvichynaukul, et al., (2015) thus relate the problem related to both delivery modes to speed, time and preferred method by the clients.

Rmachandra & Shwetmala, (2009) stipulate that in India the transportation sector is responsible for about 258.10 Tg of CO2 where about 94.5 % of the entire emission originates from on-road transport. Given the information attained from the literature , it is clear that all statistics, experiments, and other qualitative information provide agree on the fact that the transportation is a major source of GHG emissions. The emissions may vary per country, but in all countries, it is clear that the transportation sector is a key emitter of the GHG in the atmosphere. For instance, the literature alsready presents with evidence that in US, and India, the transport industry is the second largest emitter of GHG in the country. Nugroho & Zusman, (2015), also support the implication by showing that in Indonesia the transport sector is the second largest emitter of GHG.

The tracker will also be used to determine the mode of transportation used as presented below in the literature.

The similarity between the results gained and the literature is impeccable; showing that road transportation using regular modes of transport is the key emitter of GHG.

Section two of the report highlight the research gaps, questions and project objectives. That is; it presents the questions raised that led to the application of the research and the objectives that the research needs to accomplish. The main objective is to determine through quantitative data which between regular (road transportation) and express (air transportation) are the highest emitters of GHG in the atmosphere. Section three of the study involves the methodology of the research. That is; it is the methods used to collect data for the research and the approaches perceived for calculating the GHG emissions of the regular and express delivery modes. Some of the methodologies include using a fuel based approach and distance approach to gain data of the GHG emissions. Consequently, the data attained is analyzed and evaluated leading to a conclusive conclusion that allows one to accurately determine the highest emitter of the GHG between regular and express delivery systems. Section for involves an overview of the budget, and plan that was used to complete the research including the challenges and risks encountered. The section also outlines the boundaries and expected outcomes of the research and the experiment to determine GHG emissions of regular and express delivery systems.

The authors are correct when they stipulate that the consumption of fuel is a major source of GHG emissions in the industry. However, the reduction can be achieved by reducing the number of vehicles that emit the highest GHG in the atmospheres. More importantly, the vehicles that emit the highest GHG are the main users and consumers of petroleum among other fuels. Thus, the fuel consumption in transportation industry must be handled for effective management of the GHG emissions.

Nugroho & Zusman, (2015) also supports the information aboveby showing that the transport industry is the second largest emitter industry of GHG in Indonesia.

The figure above presents the GHG emissions that have been occurring since the 1990s to 2010 from different industries. According to the graph, industries such as the agricultural industry, commercial and residential have maintained a low GHG emission. However, industries such as the electric power and transportation industry have continued to increase their GHG emissions. Tg CO2 Eq is the tons of GHG emissions that an industry has been releasing. The lowest industry emitters of GHG release about 500 tons. The graph stipulates that the electric power is the highest emitter of GHG emitting about 2400 tons of GHG into the atmosphere followed by the transportation industry emitting about 2300 tons of GHG. Thus, the transportation industry emission of GHG is a relevant topic for research as ways to reduce the GHG should be identified.

The modes include the regular or express delivery modes.

According to the authors, the longer a parcel is transported in terms of distance, the more the GHG is emitted. To reduce the GHG emitted by such delivery systems one would propose the usage of express delivery services since they transport products for a less time, and thus emit lower GHG emissions. Therefore, using express delivery services will assists reduce the total GHG emissions of using modes such as trucks and other freight transportation modes.

Given the levels that follow transportation modes domestically and internationally have high differences of GHG emissions. That is; the emission between trucks and aircraft’s domestically and internationally is quite different (U.S. Department of Transportation, 2010, 2-7).

The figure attempts to show the GHG emissions of various regular and express delivery systems. According to the chart, the highest emitter of GHG in the transport industry is the light duty cars that release more than 50prcent followed by freight trucks than air transportation. The chart also presents that domestic delivery of products using air transportation release more GHG compared to international with a high difference of about 3.4%. That is; domestically, the release of GHG is linked to about 8.2% while internationally, the release sums to 3.4%. Marines are also presented whereby local delivery using the marine releases GHG at levels lower than international delivery. Therefore, despite the GHG emissions relations between regular and express delivery of products, domestic and international deliveries are significant.

Verlinde, et al., (2014), support the authors by presenting that in India road transport is responsible for about 94% of the total CO2 GHG emission in the atmosphere.

For instance, in Melbourne, the usage of passenger cars is increasing. Consequently, the GHG emitted in Melbourne lingers to increase, which is a significant environmental problem (Stone, 2007). The passenger cars are the main emitters of GHG in melbourne, supporting that on-road (regular delivery services) are the main sources of GHG in the environment.

Sea transportation is perceived as express service delivery since it is mainly used for shipping large and heavy containers. That is; express delivery in terms of sea transportation defines the transportation of services using the appropriate mode of transportation for some shipments are heavy for road transportation or unsafe for air transportation. Though slow compared to aircraft’s transportation, the usage of the marines for express delivery systems is quite common among some delivery companies such as the PSP or DHL (Marine Corps Association, 2016).

Fuel ta x: It is one of the effective policies that reduces the usage of light duty vehicles that leads to the high emission of GHG (Cheng, et al., 2015). The fuel tax occurs as a sale tax imposed on fuel that will be used for transportation. It can be linked to the carbon tax, which is a tax imposed on the GHG emitted by cars and other corporations. In this case, when the GHG emission is linked to fuel and carbon tax in the transportation industry.

Alternative transportation services: shifting the travel distances of passenger among other light duty vehicles to alternative means of transport will effectively reduce the GHG released to the atmosphere. The shift would provide significant benefits to the world through reduced health problems, environmental and global warming issues (Xia, et al., 2015).

The tracking devices are important in ensuring effective distribution in the market leading to effective market competition, cost reduction delivery and maintaining the delivery of goods to guarantee satisfaction to customers and clients. The GPS system assists in tracking the products transportation and ensure timely deliveries. The GPS tracking devices occur in two types as passive and active GPS tracking systems.

Passive vs. Active Gps System

The main factor that differentiates the GPS systems is the approach in which they transmit and process data regarding the locations of the products been transported throughout the transportation time. The active data delivery time to customers and shipping companies in real time. The GPS provides information regarding the location of the delivery in terms of latitudes and longitudes. Thus, one can locate the product’s movement throughout the shipping. The passive GPS system does not release data on real time, instead, it stores the data of the movement of the shipment in a data logger to be accessed later. The stored is used in mapping and processing the data to show the delivery pattern of a shipment on a time. However, the passive GPS systems installation is cost-expensive since the storing of the data in the data logger is uploaded in a cloud network. Thus, the cost of the system of tracking the goods is cheap. The active GPS is quite expensive since it requires continuous transmission of the delivery tracks demonstrating the continuous flow of data
(Manage GPS, 2014).

Comparison of Regular and Express Delivery Services

According to the United States Securities and Exchange Commision, (2015) express means of delivery are more reliable and are used by most of the FedEx customers. The services are cost-effective and highly reliable for timely delivery. On the other hand, regular delivery services also identified as FedEx Ground is used locally mainly. The delivery mainly concerns products of low volumes, products that are not urgent and other named factors. Thus depending on the usage of the regular and express delivery systems, it is clear that express delivery systems are more reliable than the regular delivery means. It is important that the difference is understood, where in terms of FedEx it is linked to cost and fuel consumption. More importantly, it is linked to the environmental factor of GHG emission and corporate responsibility of attempting to reduce the GHG emissions from its delivery services.

DPDHL, (2015) also agrees that usage of express delivery services is more reliable for delivering urgent products at a satisfactory time. The DHL also approves that express delivery services are used more than the regular where they transport tons worth 3.8 million dollars in 2015 (DPDHL, 2015). Thus, transportation using express delivery services is more used and profitable, while at the same time capable of managing the GHG emissions in the transportation industry by reduced usage of regular transportation services.

According to Verlinde, et al., (2014), express delivery services are also better for local deliveries since they save time and manage environmental factors such as GHG emissions. DHL Trend Research, (2016) also show that regular and express delivery services are the main used services for transportation. However, more innovations are still needed to ensure the fuel consumption of the vehicles is reduced with the aim of managing the environmental problem of GHG emissions. In Melbourne, GHG is also emitted highly by the transport industry besides the electricity industry (Stone, 2007). Trade between countries is one important factor for all countries, thus international delivery of parcels cannot be eliminated. The international transportation systems and trade is a major source used for accounting for the GHG emissions of the express delivery systems. The international transport is responsible for about 33% of the total GHG emissions in the sector. However, on-road transportation is the highest emitter of GHG showing that regular transportation services are the highest emitters of GHG compared to express GHG emissions (Cristea, et al., 2011).

Literature result

The literature has presented that there is a key problem related to GHG emissions from the transportation industry. The purpose of the literature is to demonstrate, which among the transportation modes (regular delivery services and express delivery service) is the most GHG emitter. More importantly, it presents the GHG emissions that the transportation industry emits when transporting parcels domestically and internationally. Thus, the aim is to present the highest emitter of GHG in the transportation industry between the regular and express transportation modes among other important factors linked to GHG emission in the industry.

Domestic and international delivery process on both regular and express delivery systems is quite different. That is; the emission levels of GHG domestically and internationally are different. Internationally, aircraft’s as express delivery systems release high emissions, though the trucks still release the highest. Domestically, the GHG releases are high compared to international delivery systems.

Project Objectives

  • The first objective of the research is to review several existing types of research to understand the GHG emissions in the transportation industry.

  • The research aims at providing some of the main factors that can be used to reduce the GHG emissions in the transportation industry. Thus, it critically analyzes the emission of GHG in the transportation industry; including how to track transportation of parcels locally and internationally while calculating the GHG emissions of the transportation of the deliveries.

  • The research also will aim to present a varied analysis of the GHG emissions between regular and express delivery services. Regular and express delivery systems are the modes of transportation that are used for transporting parcels and other transportation services. All modes of transportation are either regular or express delivery modes.

  • Consequently, the research will present, which is the highest emitter of the GHG in the transportation industry. Thus, the main objective of the research is to present the key emitter of GHG gasses in the transportation industry.

  • The GPS tracker will be tracked to determine the transportation distances, and the GHG emissions of transporting a parcel. The passive GPS tracker due to it cost-effective system will be used for the experiment. Thus, the data will be from the data logger of the system.

  • Emissions factors: The emission of the GHG gasses in the transportation industry derives from the fuel consumption and the transportation mode used. That is; the increase in fuel consumption leads to high GHG emissions.

  • The distance traveled also influences the emission as the longer the distance traveled, the more the emission. Additionally, the weight of the parcel been transported affects the GHG emission. Heavier parcels emit more GHG compared to transporting lighter parcels. For instance, FedEx is increasing the charges for heavier and lightweight parcels including the length of the products to transported (Martinez, 2015). The extension stipulates the rising costs of transporting these products. The costs are related to fuel consumed, which is linked to the GHG emitted.

  • On the other hand, using regular delivery services emits more GHG compared to express delivery services. More importantly, the data will always be collected by analyzing the regular vs. express delivery services domestically and internationally.

The origin of the parcel is Melbourne and the destination is Sydney. The first travel mode to be used is air, using a passive GPS system that will be used later to calculate the GHG emission of transporting the parcel using air. The same process will be used where the transportation of a similar parcel on the truck will be carried. Once the experiment is complete, the attained results will be used to calculate the GHG emission of the truck vs that of the plane.

The passive GPS tracker to be used will be attached to the parcel been transported. The tracker will continuously record the miles traveled, where the information will be used to determine the GHG emission. The calculation of the GHG is dependent on the distance traveled, which is the method used for the experiment. The fuel consumed will also play a significant role in determining the GHG though it cannot be attributed to the GPS data.

  • The data from the experiment is similar to the literature data that states that the usage of truck emits more GHG compared to using air. The truck used to tranport a parcel from Melbourne to Sydney traveled a longer distance compared to the plane and consumed more fuel. Consequently, the increase in distance traveled and fuel consumed leads to an increase in the GHG emitted.

  • As a result, the research is in agreement with the literature that the usage of regular delivery modes emits more GHG compared to the usage of express delivery systems.

  • More importantly, the research presents that transporting products domestically emits more GHG than transporting products internationally. This may be linked to the fuel consumption and the transportation modes mainly used in transporting parcels domestically and internationally. Domestically, regular transportation modes such as trucks are mainly used while internationally, express delivery modes are used.

Solution to Risks

  • The solution is the passive GPS system.

The main risks in the project are time and money, which can easily be managed through using the passive GPS tracker. On using the tracker, I will have information to locate and identify the movements of the parcel from its origin to its destination. More importantly, since the GPS stores all data in its data logger, I will not have to be present to ensure its effectiveness and guarantee the satisfaction of the information presented. Since the passive GPS tracker is only compensated on a monthly basis, the money needed for the experiment will be sufficient to effectively carry out the experiment. More importantly, if the first results are not satisfactory, I will have more time to use the GPS for another experiment to compare the results for satisfactory results.


The literature provides sufficient information and strategies that may be used to effectively curb the issue of GHG emissions in the transportation industry. However, to apply some of the strategies will require time and planning, which may take more than needed to manage the problem.

Therefore, prior to such strategies are employed to curb the GHG emission in the transportation industry, I would recommend a reduction in the usage of regular delivery modes and more usage of express delivery modes. That is; the express emits a less amount of GHG compared to the regular means of transport. Thus, through using express delivery means more than the regular will lead to a positive outcome on handling the GHG emission in the transport industry. For instance, FedEx Express has lowered the costs of using express delivery modes, since they are more profitable and leads to reduced GHG emissions (FedEX, 2015). Thus, the usage of express delivery services dominantly will be good for the environment and the economy.