As a forward-thinking business in the industry, climate change and environmental issues are topics we have discussed at great length – from HGV Levies to emissions statistics. However, it has been noted by more than ourselves that the transport and logistics industry seems to take a disproportionate level of blame and, therefore, expectation for change.
Of course, all must work to reduce our carbon footprint, but the world cannot simply expect the logistics industry to foot the bill of climate change – both in terms of finance and convenience – of lowering the sector’s impact on the planet, whilst relying on it with increasing demands.
Never has this disparity become more starkly clear than in the results of a recent report from Barclays. The study looked at customers’ willingness to be greener with their retail deliveries.
Although respondents indicated that they expect businesses to offer more sustainable options for deliveries to help tackle climate change, they do not wish to share the increased cost associated with this. Customers are more likely to be swayed by businesses which offer green options for their deliveries, however, 62% said that they would not be willing to pay for these, and a large majority of older shoppers would expect the business to fully absorb the cost.
The study focuses on a respondent’s relationship with retailers, but the issue is inherently tied with retail business’ logistics providers. Although there are increasing demands from customers to have deliveries which are increasingly quicker and greener, the expectation is that this is not something worth paying for – a clear discrepancy between expectations and responsibilities.
The first step has been made with this study – it is important to discover more about consumers’ true feelings on eco-friendly deliveries and payment if plans are to be made to tackle a change in attitude.
Reducing the impact we have on our planet is an effort shared by all – where it is everyone’s responsibility, everyone should share the burden of cost. This could be in the form of higher delivery charges to cover the cost of eco-friendly fuels and lorries, or working with consumers to reduce the expectations of same- or next-day deliveries.
In time, it is hoped that the choice to be greener will be less costly as technologies advance; but, until then, let us remember that working to save our planet and tackle climate change is a responsibility and cost we all must carry together.