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IRU Green Compact - The road to net-zero

IRU Green Compact

IRU’s Green Compact is a collective global action to achieve carbon neutrality in commercial road transport by 2050.

The Green Compact outlines a clear roadmap for the industry to meet global decarbonisation goals while continuing to provide transport services for the people, communities and economies that depend on them.

In unanimously adopting the Green Compact, IRU members were united in their historic commitment for our industry – in cooperation with its regulators, suppliers and clients – to address the enormous challenge in decarbonising commercial road transport.

Five pillars

Based on the more comprehensive well-to-wheel approach for measuring CO2 emissions, IRU’s Green Compact studies, maps and tracks action across five pillars:

  • Alternative Fuels – Accelerated implementation of low- and zero-carbon fuels, including electric, hydrogen, biodiesel, biogas, and e-fuels
  • Efficient Logistics – Digitalisation, automation, advanced routing, eco-trucks, and retiming
  • Efficient Vehicles – Materials and design, tyres, engine improvements, lubrification, and fleet renewal cycles
  • Efficient drivers – Driver monitoring, training, education, and certification
  • Collective Mobility – Integrated ticketing and timetables, service frequency, terminals and infrastructure, and awareness and promotion

New research

Based on common principles and a standard methodology, the Green Compact gathers data and evidence across the five pillars, develops practical models, tests concepts, shares best practices, and scales up proven solutions.

The first major research project undertaken in 2022/23 focused on Europe. It assessed three scenarios for the industry to fully decarbonise up to 2050, based on different mixes of energy sources that include electricity, hydrogen and biofuels.

Covering the EU27 and 10 other European countries, the research compared the investment needed to cut CO2 emissions to reach the 2050 goal in terms of fleet renewal, energy production and distribution, and infrastructure.

And then to outline key actions within each pillar based on the more effective scenario.

Global, regional, local

Countries in all regions have committed to achieve net-zero CO2 emissions in their transport sectors by 2050.

However, countries and regions have vastly different transport and energy landscapes. The specific mix of different solutions that will help advance one country’s commercial road transport sector to carbon neutrality will not work in other countries.

This is as true for neighbours as it is for countries on opposite sides of the planet.

The Green Compact is therefore built on regional flexibility in terms of evidence gathering, testing and scaling up of solutions.

New models and tools are being developed based on the current research that will apply to all regions of the world, all types of road transport operations, and different levels of policy-making.