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DHL adds a green tinge to its Singapore fleet

Anushkar Mohinani | Sept. 1, 2011
The company plans to cut emissions by 30 percent by 2020.

chris ong

Christopher Ong, Vice President, Business Development, First Choice and GoGreen, DHL Express (Asia Pacific)

In a heightened effort to run a more eco-sustainable business, DHL Express Singapore has embarked on a Vehicle Energy Reduction Program (VERP) as part of its fleet management approach under the logistics company’s GoGreen Program.

The GoGreen Program is a group-wide effort initiated in 2007 to improve carbon efficiency, and active fleet management is a key strategy to managing the carbon footprint of DHL locally, said Christopher Ong, vice president of business development, First Choice and GoGreen for DHL Express Asia Pacific.  He was speaking at Singapore’s Fullerton Hotel last week.
VERP is essentially the installation of a live-tracking device for vehicles, which DHL has “tailored” to focus on carbon tracking, said Ong. Currently in the ninth-week of trial stage, VERP has involved implementing in-vehicle GPS and vehicle diagnostics units in 17 vehicles to capture data on vehicle location, speed, fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions, he elaborated.

The device is able to track details down to vehicle idling time, harsh turning and braking – all of which result in energy and fuel wastage, added Ong.

Reports are then generated to provide feedback to drivers to stimulate improvement and promote fuel efficient driving, he continued.

VERP is intended first and foremost to measure driving activities, and ultimately improve vehicle fuel economy by changing driver behaviours, highlighted Ong. “You can’t manage what you can’t measure,” he emphasised.

So far, the trial phase has seen a five percent improvement in fuel efficiency, he said.

The company is looking to fully roll out VERP across its Singapore vehicles by the end of the year.

No silver bullet

DHL Express Singapore has also adopted several other initiatives under the GoGreen Program including the installation of energy-efficient lighting and use of electric-powered forklifts.


Herbert Vongpusanachai, Managing Director, DHL Express (Singapore)

“There are many elements in the abatement programme, it is not driven by one big silver bullet,” said Herbert Vongpusanachai, managing director for DHL Express Singapore .

The company has also adopted a ‘paper policy’ aimed at getting employees to reduce or eliminate printing altogether, said Vongpusanachai.

It’s not always about implementing the best green technology. Effective behaviour change is the key to reducing the overall carbon footprint in the long run, Vongpusanachai highlighted.

DHL’s Singapore operations have already achieved a 15.7 percent improvement in its carbon dioxide efficiency in 2010 compared to 2009, and the Asia Pacific operations as a whole have achieved 14.1 percent reduction in carbon dioxide, he pointed out.

DHL has targeted to improve its carbon dioxide efficiency by 30 percent by the year 2020, compared to 2007.


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