It reduces CO2 emissions, saves money, and reduces congestion on the highways: shipping instead of trucking makes sense for many reasons. Xella Serbia and Xella Romania show how this can work on a river route: After seven days on the Danube, from the port of Bogojevo (Serbia) to the port of Giurgiu (Romania), 920 tons of calcium silicate products were successfully delivered, saving 64 tons of CO2 compared to traditional ways of transport.
Xella Romania initiated and coordinated the first Danube shipment of construction materials from the Apatin plant in Serbia to Romania in a joint project with the team from Xella Serbia.
River transport means reducing CO2 emissions
Sebastian Dima, Supply Chain Manager at Xella Romania, was the initiator, responsible for the implementation and supervision of the entire project, with the support of the local teams. "Our goal is to offer our customers efficient and affordable construction solutions, the best possible delivery alternative for their projects and for Xella, while being responsible for the environment," Sebastian Dima emphasizes. River transport is one of the most environmentally friendly means of long-distance transportation. "We aim to minimize both the distance and duration of the transport, as well as the total cost, through consistent and effective route planning. To achieve this, we promote close cooperation between the company and its suppliers", explains the supply chain manager. And in this pilot project, this collaborative approach enabled Xella to optimize delivery and significantly reduce its environmental footprint.
Compared to road transport, this approach not only improves the CO2 balance, but also proves to be cost-effective and fuel-efficient. It also takes pressure off the highways while ensuring a faster and more efficient delivery, as Sebastian Dima enthuses: "As a result, we have successfully reduced CO2 emissions on this particular trip, and because we used a river barge, we were able to transport a large amount of cargo in one trip. As a result, we are considering using the Danube route more often in the future."
Instead of 42 road voyages, one on the Danube
Another significant benefit is the reduction of costs in several areas: up to 10% reduction in transportation costs and additional savings in customs formalities: "We only had to go through customs once instead of 42 times for the same volume delivered by truck, which translates into lower costs and fewer customs formalities," explains Sebastian Dima.
In addition, safety plays a critical role in logistics, and this river shipment was no exception, to protect the lives and health of the ship's crew, port personnel, and everyone else involved. The shipment included the implementation of safety standards for personal protective equipment, the use of appropriate fuel handling equipment, the implementation of waste management procedures, and compliance with international environmental regulations. And Xella's team of professionals ensured that all safety measures were implemented and followed.
After the successful completion of this project, there are other benefits in addition to the environmental ones: Xella Romania is one step closer to its customers, enabling faster deliveries of existing and future products, continuing to ensure safe deliveries, and acting consciously towards the environment.