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GIRO-ZERO secures new funding to drive transition to Net Zero

29 June 2023

New funding will allow the GIRO-ZERO project to expand its reach and impact, bringing Colombia's road freight industry one step closer to a more sustainable future.

GIRO-ZERO involves experts from Cardiff University and Universidad de Los facilitating the adoption of low and zero-carbon vehicle technologies aimed at reducing the carbon footprint of Colombia's road freight transport sector.

Using expertise in logistics, transportation, management science, data analytics, and economics, the team will assess the viability of alternative and cleaner technologies including mainly electric vehicles, and hydrogen. Researchers will also focus on enhancing the planning and execution of trips run by trucking companies in Colombia through the use of dynamic planning tools.

The follow-up research funding will allow the project to fulfil its ambitious plans which include:

  • establishing a centre of excellence which will aim to lead research on sustainable road freight transport across Latin America
  • running national and international workshops and training
  • conducting pilot studies
  • publishing policy, technical, and industry reports

Professor Emrah Demir, Principal Investigator of the project at Cardiff University and Professor of Operational Research, said:

“I am proud to be part of the GIRO-ZERO project, which is making significant strides towards a Net Zero future for Colombia’s road freight transport sector. Through our research and collaboration with key stakeholders, we are working towards a zero-emission strategy that not only benefits the environment but also the economy and society as a whole. This new round of funding will allow us to continue our efforts and bring us one step closer to achieving our goal.”
Professor Emrah Demir Professor of Operational Research, The PARC Professor of Manufacturing and Logistics

Professor Vasco Sanchez Rodrigues, Principal Expert of GIRO-ZERO, highlighted:

"GIRO-ZERO is going from strength to strength. This new funding will enable the project to expand its outreach and increase its impact, which is directly contributing to Cardiff Business School's public value strategy. The third year in the project is fundamental for the long-term sustainability of GIRO-ZERO. Our ambitious aim is to work in tandem with our partner Universidad de los Andes to establish a centre of excellence to make the project outputs sustainable in the long term."
Professor Vasco Sanchez Rodrigues Professor in Sustainable Supply Chain Management

Dr Wessam Abouarghoub, a Principal Expert of GIRO-ZERO and leading the GIRO-ZERO toolbox, said:

"I am delighted to be part of such a successful project that is becoming a green initiative standard for the Colombian road freight transport sector, striving for excellence by guiding the industry into making real and positive changes. At the centre of this success is the GIRO-ZERO toolbox, which is being recognised by beneficiaries and stakeholders as the much-needed environmental tool for strategic enhanced decision-making. For example, by the end of year two, we launched the environmental road freight transport index (ERFTI), a tool for reporting, benchmarking, and improving environmental performance that all organisations, from large corporations to small companies can use."
Dr Wessam M.T. Abouarghoub Reader in Logistics and Operations Management, Co-ordinator for Transport, Shipping Port and Maritime Research Group (TRANSPAM)

Professor Gordon Wilmsmeier, Project Leader and Principal Expert from Universidad de Los Andes, commented:

“GIRO-ZERO has been able to grow its network and the support and collaboration from the beneficiaries and network partners has been exceptional. The roadmap in combination with the GIRO-ZERO tools has been well received. The possibility to be able to make decisions with greater information provides an opportunity to shape the future of the road freight sector in Colombia. In the next phase of the project, we will work towards showing the effectiveness and benefits in jointly working towards reaching the set emissions reduction targets.”

Researchers involved in the GIRO-ZERO project include: Professor Emrah Demir, Professor Vasco Sanchez Rodrigues, and Dr Wessam Abouarghoub from Cardiff University, and Professor Gordon Wilmsmeier, Professor Juan Pablo Bocarejo Suescun, and Dr Carlos Eduardo Hernández Castillo from Universidad de Andes.

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