Strong trio achieves significant CO2 reduction in transport of clay

Brauer Grondverzet & Transport, Vandersanden and Shell have joined forces to make the transport of clay from Germany to Kessel more sustainable.  The initiative was the brainchild of Brauer Grondverzet & Transport. As managing director Michel Sabella explains, "We had to replace two dump trucks, and wanted to take this opportunity to switch to LNG trucks. We can't do this alone, we need the support of Vandersanden and Shell."

Reduce CO2 emissions by 23%

Michel Degen, Director Pavers, says, "Brauer Grondverzet & Transport is a trusted partner that transports most of our clay from Germany to our Kessel site. In line with our CSR philosophy, it's important to us to work with local partners. We welcome the fact that Brauer Grondverzet & Transport is switching to LNG trucks. Sustainability, one of our core values, is incorporated in one of our strategic objectives, namely Corporate Well-being, so this initiative fits perfectly. Road transport partly influences the Environmental Cost Indicator of our products. Compared to diesel models, the new Volvo LNG trucks will reduce CO2 emissions by an impressive 23%. "The LNG dump trucks demand a significant investment," says Michel Sabella. "Moreover, we're expanding our vehicle fleet with an additional dump truck, which is why Vandersanden's commitment is so important to us. Not only is continuity in the collaboration guaranteed, we've also agreed that we will be responsible for more transportation. The three LNG trucks will operate exclusively for Vandersanden."

Reduce CO2 emissions by 23%

LNG filling stations

Vehicles need fuel, and it is only possible to fill up with LNG in a few places in Germany and the Netherlands. According to Michel Sabella, "Travelling a long way for fuel is not an option, as the benefits for the environment would then be lost. A filling station en route or close to the route is essential, which is why we contacted Shell." Ron Driessen, Account Manager of Shell Fleet Solutions, explains, "Shell is committed to cleaner and more sustainable sources of energy. Climate change can only be tackled by working together with companies, government and citizens. The collaboration with Vandersanden and Brauer Grondverzet & Transport coincides precisely with our vision. Currently, Shell is working on expanding the number of LNG filling stations."

Why LNG?

The advantage of LNG is that this fuel is cheaper and combustion is cleaner compared to conventional fuels. LNG is almost free of sulphur and particulates, and can contribute to reduced emission of greenhouse gases  such as CO2 throughout the entire chain. Besides this, LNG lorries are quieter than lorries with a diesel engine. Ron Driessen says, "Since transport makes up for more than 30% of global energy consumption and 25% of the total emission of CO2, Shell is trying to take significant steps in reducing CO2 emissions with LNG. In the Netherlands, we support the goal of the Dutch government to halve the emission of CO2, which is why we're investing in a number of concrete projects. These include planting five million trees in collaboration with Staatsbosbeheer (Dutch Forestry Commission), installing fast charging points, and increasing the number of hydrogen and LNG filling stations. "Fully CO2 neutral transport is not yet possible," says Ron Driessen. "That's why Shell offers companies the option to compensate CO2 ." According to Michel Sabella, "Brauer Grondverzet & Transport consciously participated in this programme to ensure our transport is CO2-neutrally."

Corporate Well-being

For Brauer, the switch to LNG and CO2 compensation is just the beginning. "We're investigating the possibility of organic LNG, which is even less polluting," says Michel Sabella. The company is also looking into other sustainability projects, such as the sustainable generation of its own energy. Based on the Corporate Well-being philosophy, Vandersanden is also keen to realise more sustainable transport. Michel Degen says, "We place the highest demands (Euro 6) on our transporters' trucks. For many transporters, LNG is still a bridge too far, simply because there aren't enough filling stations and the significant investments required." Nathali Donatz, Group Marketing Director, adds, "Our ambition is to reduce the impact our production process and products have on the environment throughout the entire chain. The only way to do this is to collaborate with our partners. The initiative taken by Brauer Grondverzet & Transport reflects this perfectly. In this respect, sustainability has everything to do with sustainable relations; trusting one another, and working together on a sustainable future." Michel Degen says, "It says a lot that Brauer Grondverzet & Transport approached us. It shows that our vision on sustainability in the market is recognised, which is something we can be quite proud of."

What is LNG?

LNG stands for Liquefied Natural Gas. It is a clear, colourless and non-toxic liquid that is produced when natural gas is cooled down to approximately -160 ºC.  This causes it to shrink to 1/600th of its original volume, making it easier to store and transport.  LNG is an attractive fuel for road transport, because it can reduce CO2 emissions by an impressive 23%. Furthermore, the cost per km driven is lower than, for example, diesel.

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