Eighteen European companies and organisations launch the European Clean Trucking Alliance to call for zero-emission trucks

A newly-formed coalition of European key players in road freight urges the EU to accelerate the transition to clean trucks in order to meet the emission targets of the proposed EU Climate Law by 2030 and achieve a carbon-neutral Europe by 2050.

Eighteen leading European businesses and organisations are launching today, July 15, 2020, the European Clean Trucking Alliance (ECTA), a unique coalition to call for the decarbonisation of road freight in the EU.

ECTA brings together a broad and diverse range of European players in the road transport of goods such as leading businesses, associations and civil society organisations that share a strong commitment to accelerate the EU’s transition to zero-emissions trucks.

Frans Timmermans, European Commission Executive Vice President for the European Green Deal, says: “A green recovery is good for our health, our economy, and our jobs. I’m pleased to see yet again an impressive group of businesses, NGO’s, and citizens from across Europe coming together in support of this goal. The European Clean Trucking Alliance offers European capitals a concrete project to include in their economic recovery plans: decarbonising truck fleets. With the European Green Deal as its compass, the Alliance can accelerate the move towards zero-emission freight transport for a healthier future and a stronger economy.”

ECTA business members include major hauliers, logistics and consumer goods companies in Europe and beyond. Altogether, the ECTA business members employ more than 1.6 million people globally and have over EUR 325 billion yearly revenue. This latter figure is comparable to the GDP of Denmark1. The organisations that have joined ECTA are some of the civil society organisations and associations with the strongest network of members and experience in transport and mobility at the European level. The International Council on Clean Transportation acts as technical observer.

Stientje van Veldhoven, Minister for the Environment of The Netherlands and Chair of the Transport Decarbonisation Alliance, says: “I am very proud and happy to see major European fleet owners and operators launching the European Clean Trucking Alliance (ECTA) today. It’s efficient; it’s cost effective; and it’s necessary to start with zero-emission freight vehicles and I am happy that industry players are now voicing this message in the EU. I’d like to see how we can accelerate the market for zero emission vans and trucks as part of the post-Covid-19 recovery. We need each other. We need you, you need us, and together we can move faster.” 

Andreas Scheuer, Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure of Germany, says: “I want mobility that is modern, environmentally friendly and clean. Climate change is transforming our world, and we have to tackle the enormous challenge it poses and rethink mobility. For this purpose, we need a close exchange of ideas and experience in Europe. Here, the European Clean Trucking Alliance can become an important catalyst. I wish the Alliance a successful start.”

There are approximately 40 million vehicles delivering across Europe2, with trucks carrying more than three quarters of all freight transported over land3. As road freight activity is expected to double by 20504, ECTA aims to support the EU in the development and implementation of sustainable road freight transport policies to drastically reduce CO2 and air pollutant emissions.

Teresa Ribera, Fourth Vice-President of the Government and Minister for Ecological Transition and Demographic Challenge of Spain, says: “The road to zero emissions is global, cross-sectoral and unstoppable and, in this context, the shift towards clean technologies is becoming more evident across all segments of road transportation. Initiatives such as the European Clean Trucking Alliance prove leadership required and the interest and capacity of the transport sector to anticipate and boldly tackle the problem of emissions from freight and to transform its operations into a clean supply chain, while attracting new talent to the industry and building a resilient business prepared for climate risk.

In its first communication Europe’s Opportunity to Decarbonise the Road Freight Sector, ECTA calls upon the European Commission to make the shift to zero-emissions trucks a priority in order to meet the ambitious emission targets of the proposed EU Climate Law by 2030 and achieve a carbon-neutral Europe by 2050.

Pascal Canfin, Member of the European Parliament and Chair of the European Parliament Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, says: “I welcome the creation of the European Clean Trucking Alliance. To make Europe the first climate neutral continent by 2050, we need to support businesses that take concrete commitments to deploy green solutions that will decarbonise the road freight sector and accelerate the transition towards zero-emissions mobility in Europe.”

Adam Jarubas, Member of the European Parliament, Poland, says: “I welcome the fact that European business is endorsing emission reductions in transport. There is a lot of work to be done to overcome technical restrictions. We successfully managed to push for clean urban bus transport, which is the first important step. But this was possible on short, predictable routes of vehicles, which is not the case in long range heavy road transport. To achieve our goal we need strong cooperation of all players: business, manufacturing industry and regulatory bodies.”

In 2019, the EU set targets for reducing the average emissions from new lorries for 2025 and 2030 for the first time in the Union5. As part of the upcoming European Commission’s work programme, the Alliance urges the EU to take further steps and “come forward with a clear pathway and political strategy to enable the deployment of zero-emission vehicles and infrastructure”.

As EU Member States consider recovery investments in response to the Covid-19 crisis, ECTA urges them “to safeguard jobs and support long-term sustainable solutions that will decarbonise the road freight sector”.


Statements from ECTA Members and Supporters
(in alphabetical order by company/organisation name)

Erik Novaes, Vice President of Procurement & Sustainability, Europe, Anheuser-Busch InBev (press contact: Lou Fernley, louise.fernley@ab-inbev.com)
“We welcome the ECTA’s vision to achieve the fastest feasible decarbonisation of road freight vehicles in Europe. As a leader in sustainable brewing, we are committed to piloting different zero-emission technologies to deliver our beers in a number of European cities. Our first e-trucks will be on the roads by the end of this year, and we plan a hydrogen pilot in 2021. Sharing our best practices, we are firmly dedicated to working with the industry and governments towards a greener future of zero-emission transport.”

Heinrich Kerstgens, Co-Managing Director, Contargo
“For Contargo, it is important to help achieve the climate goals of the Paris Agreement. One significant element is combined transport. Here, as well as decarbonising barge and rail transport and handling activities at terminals, it is necessary to provide local delivery of containers by truck that is as CO2-reduced as possible. For this purpose we urgently require offers from manufacturers that make economic sense.”Torsten Albig, Vice President Corporate Representation Brussels, Deutsche Post DHL Group
“How quickly we will make progress with decarbonizing the logistics sector will largely depend on how well technology and infrastructure meet the needs of the industry. An alliance such as ECTA, which bundles the demand side, will help to accelerate the use of zero-emission vehicles even faster.”


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