NITI Aayog releases “Fast Tracking Freight in India” Report

What is the News?

NITI Aayog and Rocky Mountain Institute(RMI) has released a report titled “Fast Tracking Freight in India: A Roadmap for Clean and Cost-Effective Goods Transport”.

Objectives of the Fast Tracking Freight in India Report:
  • Establish a coherent vision for a cost-effective, clean, and optimised freight transport system in India.
  • Quantify the economic, environmental, and public health benefits of the freight system.
  • Describe techno-economically feasible solutions that would collectively deliver those benefits.
India’s Logistics Sector:
  • Currently, India’s logistics sector represents 5% of India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The sector employs around 2.2 crore people.
  • India handles 6 billion tonnes of goods each year, amounting to a total annual cost of INR 9.5 lakh crore.
  • These goods represent a variety of domestic industries and products:
    • 22% are agricultural goods,
    • 39% are mining products and
    • 39% are manufacturing-related commodities.
  • Trucks and other vehicles handle most of the movement of these goods. Railways, coastal and inland waterways, pipelines, and airways account for the rest.

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Measures need to accommodate more urban citizens:
  • India’s freight activity will grow five-fold by 2050 and about 400 million citizens move to cities. So, a whole system transformation can help uplift the freight sector.
  • This transformation will be defined by tapping into opportunities such as:
    • Increasing share of rail-based transport
    • Optimisation of logistics and supply chains.
    • Shift to electric and other clean-fuel vehicles.
  • These solutions can help India save Rs. 311 lakh crore cumulatively over the next three decades
Other measures recommended by the Fast Tracking Freight in India Report:

The Logistic sector can reduce its rising CO2 emissions and high logistic costs by following measures:

  • Increasing the rail network’s capacity
  • Promoting intermodal transport
  • Improving warehousing and trucking practices
  • Policy measures and pilot projects for clean technology adoption and
  • Stricter fuel economy standards.

Benefits of these measures: These measures will lead to the following benefits:

  • Reduces the logistics cost by 4% of GDP
  • Achieves 10 gigatonnes of cumulative CO2 emissions savings between 2020 and 2050
  • Reduces nitrogen oxide (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) emissions by 35% and 28%, respectively until 2050.

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Source: PIB


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