What sustainability features should you look for at a logistics park?
When you’re looking for the perfect logistics park for your growing business needs, there are several factors to consider. These include the location of the park, what transportation you’ll have access to, and what features it offers that will optimize your supply chain management.
One consideration that is sometimes forgotten is supply chain sustainability. Sustainability is a hot topic in all industries, logistics included. While consumers demand faster access to online goods, they’re also looking for companies that use sustainable measures.
Reducing a company’s carbon footprint is a popular topic, especially since consumers are becoming more environmentally aware. A green logistics park can help you reduce your carbon footprint in a variety of ways. For example, the supply chain solutions team at Agility helped customers reduce emissions by an average of 8 percent per year.
In modern business, sustainable options are more important than ever. When you have a suitable logistics space, such as the affordable options Agility offers, sustainable practices will help you meet your goals of lowering your costs, increasing your productivity, and reducing your carbon footprint.
Evaluation index of green logistics parks
Supply chain sustainability is one way to reduce the larger problem of our impact on the environment. The carbon footprint of individual aspects of supply chains might seem negligible, but they add up to a significant impact.
For example, the European Commission asserts that 2.5 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions come from maritime transport. Additionally, the Environmental and Energy Study Institute reports that transport by plane drives about 5 percent of global warming.
Green logistics parks differ from their unsustainable counterparts in three ways. First, they reduce energy costs. Secondly, they reduce the environmental impact of the building, and finally, they increase productivity. With the right logistics enterprise, your business can enjoy all three benefits.
What are the elements of a green logistics park?
When it comes to a green logistics park, the main features you look for should serve multiple purposes. These elements are those that reduce carbon emission, energy consumption, and the environmental impact of the building. Ideally, logistics providers will also have a green building certification.
A common sustainable goal for logistics parks is to reduce energy consumption. Features such as LED lighting, solar panels, and skylights accomplish this at low cost. Another is to use construction techniques that make the buildings themselves greener. Green logistics parks should also strive to reduce waste and increase recycling.
As technology develops and businesses continue to understand the importance of reducing their environmental impact, new solutions will arise. Therefore, an essential consideration for a logistics park should be that it can evolve with new techniques.
What qualifies as a green logistics park?
Simply put, a green logistics park is any park that meets standards to reduce its impact on the environment. This usually includes measuring and lowering carbon emissions, reducing waste, and lowering resource consumption.
There are other efforts a logistics park can take to reduce its footprint, such as increasing natural spaces. Agility warehousing spaces use drought-resistant plants to create natural spaces that do not require lots of maintenance.
One of the most significant factors regarding what a park can offer is its location. For example, Agility’s parks are near major roads and national population hubs, meaning the distance your trucks must drive is significantly reduced. Agility’s prime locations maximize your distribution efficiency, saving you money and lowering your environmental impact.
Additionally, logistics parks qualify as green when they are EDGE certified. EDGE certification means that Agility’s buildings have reduced water and energy consumption by at least 20 percent compared to traditional buildings.
Key performance indicators in green logistics parks
When it comes to the key performance indicators (KPIs) of a green logistics park, there are two main elements to look for.
The first KPI is the financial aspect of sustainable development. While decreasing your carbon footprint is important, it’s crucial that you use a financially sound strategy to incorporate green technologies. Additionally, green solutions should be able to scale with your business.
Second, sustainable methods should increase the productivity of your entire supply chain. With the right training, you can create a team of personnel who can implement your sustainable practices in every part of your supply chain. From your warehouse floor to transport vehicles, the most successful sustainable practices will make everything run better.
How do sustainable practices reduce costs?
When the term “cut costs” comes up in conversations, people tend to think of immediate actions that result in a temporary reduction of money going out. This can involve anything from letting go of personnel, enforcing a no-idling rule for truck drivers to reduce fuel costs, or selling under-used equipment.
However, cost reductions like that often have a negative impact and are usually only temporary fixes. When a company is serious about reducing its costs, implementing green practices is a long-term option. There is a direct correlation between reducing costs and reducing your resource consumption.
For example, Agility constructs logistic spaces with the local environment in mind. Roofs and walls are built with locally sourced materials and designed to meet regional conditions. This construction method reduces your heating and cooling costs by using local knowledge of the environment. It also lowers the impact of the building by reducing the amount of shipping involved in the procurement of the construction materials.
LED lighting is another feature of Agility facilities, with both indoor and outdoor lighting using cost-effective and environmentally friendly bulbs. According to the US energy department, LEDs can reduce the amount of energy you use to light your building by up to 90 percent.
How do sustainable practices increase productivity?
New ways to increase productivity are usually towards the top of every business owner’s wish list. Increasing productivity is a great way to reduce costs and increase your selling power.
When you streamline your supply chain, you’re likely to cut methods and techniques that are wasteful. The very process of streamlining will increase your productivity. Agility parks offer optimized storage space for your needs—you can rent exactly the amount of space you need. Your warehousing space easily scales with you, with more space available whenever you need it.
Transportation is an area where many businesses see a dip in productivity, but a logistics park near national hubs means faster shipping, quicker receiving, and a smaller impact on the environment. With Agility, you gain access to the most productive means of transportation: freeways, seaports, airports, and railways.
Determining the success of sustainable practices in logistics parks
One of the most effective methods of determining the success of a logistics warehouse is to look at energy consumption. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, 25 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions come from electricity production, 23 percent from industrial production, and 13 percent from commercial business needs for heating and waste removal.
Energy management not only reduces your overall costs, but it also lowers your carbon footprint. The easiest way to determine the efficacy of your efforts to go green can be measured in the amount of energy you consume and the money you save. While there are many ways to increase your energy efficiency, Agility logistics parks offers distribution center spaces with everything set up for you.
Agility makes use of the ample roofs on its buildings by setting up solar panels. You’ll also find skylights, which not only reduce your need for lighting (thus reducing your power bill), but it makes the warehouse space more enjoyable for your employees.
The critical difference between traditional methods of cutting costs and sustainable practices is your return on investment (ROI). With conventional methods, you usually don’t see a high ROI. With sustainable practices, however, you not only get a return on your capital investment, but you also get all the other benefits that come with sustainability.
Importance of sustainable practices for logistics parks
Environmental sustainability will continue to rise in importance for all industries, and companies that want to keep their competitive edge need to embrace the movement.
However, creating a green supply chain is important beyond its appeal to customers. A green logistics park optimizes your available resources, reduces costs, and reduces your overall environmental impact.
What are the tax benefits of sustainability practices at a logistics park?
It used to be that taking sustainable measures was something a company did to improve its image. Today, sustainability is helpful for much more than your reputation. Aside from the obvious benefit of helping the environment, there are numerous economic incentives to going green. One of the incentives is tax benefits.
While tax benefits vary based on the country your business is located in, efforts in sustainability usually come with valuable tax cuts and credits.
For example, the Green Business Bureau reports that the US government offers tax credits, rebates, and breaks for companies that invest in sustainability practices. These benefits include:
- Deductions for green installations that reduce power use, such as LED lighting
- Grants and credits for properties that use alternative energy, such as solar panels
- Bonuses for recycling of waste and equipment
- Credits for using fuel-efficient vehicles
Some countries have better tax breaks than others, but you can expect to see some sort of tax benefits when you use sustainable practices.
Green warehousing technologies and products available for logistics parks
Just as logistics parks have different business features, the same is true for sustainability. Ideally, a logistics park will offer the green practices you want as well as features you can grow into.
For example, Agility logistics parks offer a long list of sustainability practices that you can make use of with little to no effort:
- Solar panels
- Construction techniques
- Low-emitting paint
- LED lighting
- Regionally-sourced construction materials
The benefit an Agility warehouse is that you don’t have to choose which green warehousing technologies you want to use—you get them all.
What are the most recent developments in green warehousing technology?
Today, the biggest developments in warehousing technology aim to reduce energy consumption and environmental impact. Current warehousing trends include a move towards automation, optimizing facilities, increasing recycling, and increasing the use of renewable energies. Optimizing facilities includes lowering resource consumption
An example of reducing resource consumption while promoting green building techniques is Agility’s use of xeriscaping. Agility uses drought-resistant plants to minimize water consumption while ensuring workers have access to natural spaces.
Recycling is of particular interest in warehousing because there is a lot of waste created in the supply chain. Agility has recycling zones set up in every logistics park. An essential part of recycling is reusing materials. Reusing materials not only saves you money, but it also lowers your carbon emission.
For example, Agility was able to help one client increase its reuse rate from 47 percent to 72 percent, which saved them over $78,000.
What factors are driving trends in green warehousing technologies?
COVID-19 has significantly impacted the way people shop, and warehousing technology has become an increasingly popular topic of conversation. According to the World Green Building Council, facilities like logistics parks have huge potential to make a massive impact on efforts to reduce global warming.
However, industrial buildings are giant consumers of energy, water, and other resources. This fact has driven the development of sustainable practices in warehouses and logistic parks.
Explore your sustainability options with Agility
Agility recognizes that sustainability practices are more than your reputation. Today’s businesses need sustainable options to meet their goals of reducing their carbon footprint, increasing productivity, and reducing costs.