The 4 A’s of Sustainable Logistics
Book chapter, 2014
Mobility and logistics activities have been fundamental to economic development and social well-being for centuries, but it is only over the past 50 years that this has received interest as a major field of academic study and as a key determinant of, for example, business performance. In the last decades, the evolution towards globalisation and the opportunities presented by technological innovation have greatly increased the importance of mobility and logistics worldwide.
Nevertheless, the growing environmental concern of citizens and governments and the widespread introduction of the concept of sustainability have simultaneously placed increasing pressure on public and private activities to take all effects related to such activities into account. Logistics, and especially freight transport representing its most physical component, has accordingly received much attention in the sustainability debate in recent years, due to the numerous external effects and the widespread effects on virtually all individuals. This has forced stakeholders involved in logistics processes to address the issue of sustainability, leading to the birth of terms combining adjectives such as sustainable, ecological, green, clean and lean with domain specific nouns such as supply chain management, logistics, freight transport and urban freight. Some specific terms such as logistics shades of green have also been introduced.