Green Future of Freight [Infographic]

An illustration depicting the green future of freight

Updated June 2022.

Infographic on The Green Future of Freight


Please share this infographic on you site by copying and pasting the code below:

Please share this infographic on your website by copying and pasting the code below:


CO2 Emissions – in grams/tonne/km

  • Trucks: 47
  • Trains: 18
  • Cargoships: 6
  • Planes: 560

Heavy-duty trucks account for the dominant share of all logistics-related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions:

  • Road freight: 57%
  • Ocean freight: 17%
  • Air freight: 9%
  • Rail freight: 6%
  • Buildings: 11%

Global Freight Transport produces 10% of Greenhouse Gas Emissions.

Freight transport produces almost half of the toxic diesel particulate matter (PM) emissions and 45% of the Nitrous Oxide.


Without change, emissions from freight are predicted to increase 290% by 2050.

Emissions from cargo ships are 3% of greenhouse gasses today and this number has remained the same for several years so far. But without change that number 15% by 2050.

Cargo ships are the most rapidly growing source of NOx and SOx. They were predicted to produce 10% more than all land-based emissions by 2020 and 40% more than land emissions by 2030. Fortunately, this rapid growth has been somewhat slowed down by the pandemic and the blockage of the Suez canal. These developments have left cargo ships at around their 3% contribution to all of the greenhouse gas emissions.


Operational measures and full implementation of existing technologies can reduce ship energy consumption and CO2 emissions by up to 75%.

Moving long-haul freight by rail can immediately reduce CO2 emissions from freight transport by over 60%.

Implementation of scrubber technology on cargo ships can reduce NOx and SOx immediately by over 90%.

In North America, 80% of the trucks return empty, and 30% of the trucks on road are empty. Filling empty trucks via a centralized market and coordination can immediately reduce air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from freight by 30%.

The future of ocean transport is hybrid electric/wind-powered ships, with CO2 emissions reduced by 60%+ and SOx and NOx emissions reduced by 90%+.

Sustainable electric rail, powered by wind and sun, offers zero-emission long haul freight near term for the continental interior regions.

Low and zero-emission heavy-duty engines are already available for “last mile” delivery from the rail.

Wind, solar, and hydro-powered electric vehicles, and hydrogen fuel cell hybrids, offer the best long-term zero-emission solution for those regions that will never be accessible by rail or water.

Please share this infographic on your site by copying and pasting the code below:


  • Diesel Particulate Matter (DPM): DPM is a component of diesel exhaust that includes soot particles made up primarily of carbon, ash, metallic abrasion particles, sulfates, and silicates. DPM is a Group 1 carcinogen, causing lung cancer and is associated with bladder cancer.
  • g CO2/tonne/km:  Carbon Dioxide in grams emitted per metric ton of freight hauled per kilometer.
  • Greenhouse gas or GHG: A gaseous compound that is capable of absorbing infrared radiation, thereby trapping and holding heat in the atmosphere.
  • Hybrid electric / wind-powered ships: Ships powered by a combination of wind and electric motors (powered by solar, with backup power from natural gas or diesel)
  • Hydrogen fuel cell hybrid: A hydrogen fuel cell hybrid vehicle uses a fuel cell, instead of a battery to power its on-board electric motor. Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are classified as zero-emissions vehicles that emit only water and heat.
  • NOx or Nitrous Oxides: NOx are greenhouse gasses and air pollutants. Over a period of a hundred years, NOx has between 265 and 310 times more impact per unit mass than carbon dioxide. It also creates ground-level ozone, the most dangerous component of photochemical smog.
  • Scrubber technology: Scrubber technology reduces air pollution by removing solid and liquid particles and pollutant gasses using a liquid.
  • SOx or Sulfur Oxides: SOx are compounds of sulfur and oxygen molecules, commonly Sulfur dioxide. Sulfur oxides cause reduced lung function, increased incidence of respiratory symptoms and diseases, irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat, and premature mortality.


Green future of freight and Freightera’s role in it: learn more about our Green Freight marketplace


Free Freight Quotes
For Businesses

Get Freight Quotes in 15 Seconds

Light Bulb Icon Choose if you’re shipping up to 10 pallets.
Light Bulb Icon Choose if you need a dedicated truck.
Light Bulb Icon Choose if you’re shipping heavy or oversized cargo.

or Sign Up | Login

Offer For Businesses Get Additional $25OFF Your Online Shipment
Thank you for reading our blog!

Ready to Ship?

Access the best freight rates from 100s of carriers in 15 seconds.
Compare prices and book online 24/7!

Sign Up Today

Looking for a Freight Shipping Solution?

Freightera is ideal for wholesalers, manufacturers & distributors,
shipping regularly in the USA & Canada, or cross-border between the two.

Get Quotes