Intermodal Freight Transport Alternatives from an Eastern European Perspective
Tibor Princz-Jakovics, Budapest University Of Technology And Economics, Mark Hary,
The key question of this paper is how can a road freight company contribute to the aims of sustainability in the above-mentioned regulatory system?
Freight transport is a very competitive sector of the economies not only in Western, but also in the Eastern part of Europe. Freight transport operators have to pay toll for usage of the road infrastructure, however it does not include the cost of road damages and other external effects which are mostly caused by heavy trucks.
The large-scale road traffic reduction is not the only solution because this mode of transport still has an important role. There are various regions where the road transport is the only possibility to deliver goods.
Small number of rail transport developments and the disadvantageous structure of railway subsidies will not contribute to any pillars of sustainability. Generally the unsuitable regulatory system will cause the further growth of road freight transport compared to rail. In this case, contributing to the sustainability will be the companies’ responsibility.
The key question of this paper is how can a road freight company contribute to the aims of sustainability in the above-mentioned regulatory system? A case study of a huge freight operator can illustrate the possible activities, which can reduce the carbon dioxide emission or savings of water and electricity.
In this research we pay special attention to the description and examination of the combined transport alternatives: Ro-La and Ro-Ro. Comparison of the costs of different transport modes (modal split) between the Western and Eastern part of Europe shows significant potential to increase competitiveness of a company. Optimal usage of road/rail/water infrastructures and the huge number of logistics centres (taking into account their regional implications) can generate cost reductions. If rerouting of the carriages can be done with a better modal split both operational and environmental costs can be saved and a small step will be taken towards sustainable mobility.
Association for European Transport