EPA’s SmartWay program helps companies advance supply chain sustainability by measuring, benchmarking, and freight transportation efficiency.
Freight Matters to Supply Chain Sustainability
Global trade has a net positive effect on the world economy. However, associated freight transportation produces adverse impacts on the environment, public health and climate.
U.S. trends point to rapid growth in freight activity.
- Between 1990 and 2013, freight activity grew by over 50 percent and is projected to nearly double again by 2040, producing more greenhouse gas and air pollutant emissions.
- Experts project that by 2050, global freight transport emissions of CO2 will surpass emissions from passenger vehicles.
These trends compel many corporations to seek opportunities to assess and streamline shipping operations so they can use less fuel and generate less pollution.
SmartWay Advances Sustainable Transportation Supply Chains
To address these trends and challenges, EPA developed the SmartWay program.
Launched in 2004, this voluntary public-private program:
- provides a comprehensive and well-recognized system for tracking, documenting and sharing information about fuel use and freight emissions across supply chains
- helps companies identify and select more efficient freight carriers, transport modes, equipment, and operational strategies to improve supply chain sustainability and lower costs from goods movement
- supports global energy security and offsets environmental risk for companies and countries
- reduces freight transportation-related climate change and air pollutant emissions by accelerating the use of advanced fuel-saving technologies
- is supported by major transportation industry associations, environmental groups, state and local governments, international agencies, and the corporate community
Core Elements of SmartWay
There are three core components of the SmartWay Program.
The SmartWay Transport Partnership
Freight shippers, carriers, logistics companies and other stakeholders partner with EPA to measure, benchmark and improve logistics operations so they can reduce their carbon footprint. Learn how to participate in SmartWay.
The SmartWay Brand
Through SmartWay technology verification and branding, EPA has accelerated availability, adoption and market penetration of fuel-saving technologies and operational practices while helping companies save fuel, lower costs and reduce adverse environmental impacts. Learn how to use the SmartWay brand.
SmartWay Global Collaboration
EPA works with a broad range of national and global organizations to harmonize global carbon accounting methods in the freight sector. SmartWay also provides support to global policy makers that wish to model transportation sustainability programs after the SmartWay program. Learn about SmartWay’s Global Collaboration.
The Future of SmartWay: Vision 2020
Based on recent recommendations from the freight community, EPA has developed SmartWay Vision 2020, a plan that outlines how SmartWay will keep pace with the evolution and future of the freight industry.
The SmartWay Vision 2020 has four principal elements:
Complete coverage of the transportation supply chain: SmartWay is developing its carbon assessment and monitoring tools to cover all modes of freight transport, (including truck, train, barge, air and marine) to leverage national and international efforts to streamline freight data, amplify the program’s reach and reduce freight emissions worldwide.
Sustainability reporting: Interest in supply chain emissions is growing, and for many companies freight transport is an increasing source of emissions. SmartWay’s carbon accounting tools use peer-reviewed methodologies and EPA standards to generate reliable performance data.
Greater global collaboration: SmartWay has served as a template for other countries and regions that are working to establish partnership-based programs to address freight emissions. SmartWay is committed to ongoing global efforts to align carbon accounting methodologies and tools, leading to greater awareness of the environmental impacts of freight and the best strategies to reduce impacts.
Information sharing: SmartWay will serve as a neutral and credible platform for increased information exchange and thought leadership, including webinars, education, peer review, speaking engagements, partner profiles, case studies and best practices guidance.
EPA is confident that the plans laid out in SmartWay Vision 2020 will continue to lead the goods movement industry forward, resulting in further emission reductions, reduced fuel costs, greater energy independence and a stronger economy and healthier environment.