NITI Aayog, with RMI and RMI India’s support, today launched Shoonya—an initiative to promote zero-pollution delivery vehicles by working with consumers and industry. The campaign aims to accelerate adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) in the urban deliveries segment and create consumer awareness about the benefits of zero-pollution delivery.
Industry stakeholders such as e-commerce companies, fleet aggregators, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and logistics companies have been scaling up their efforts towards final-mile delivery electrification. Initially, close to 30 companies including Mahindra Electric, Tata Motors, Zomato, Ashok Leyland, Sun Mobility, Lightning Logistics, Big Basket, Bluedart, Hero Electric, and Swiggy among others attended the kick-off meeting chaired by Amitabh Kant, the CEO of NITI Aayog, to show their support for the campaign. Subsequently, additional industry players will be invited to join the initiative.
As part of the campaign, a corporate branding and certification programme is being launched to recognise and promote industry’s efforts towards transitioning to EVs for final-mile deliveries. An online tracking platform will share the campaign’s impact through data such as vehicle kilometers electrified, carbon savings, criteria pollutant savings and other benefits from clean delivery vehicles.
Highlighting the primary objective of the campaign, NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said, “We will promote awareness about health, environmental and economic benefits of electric vehicles through the Shoonya campaign. I would urge e-commerce companies, auto manufacturers, and logistics fleet operators to acknowledge the opportunity to eliminate pollution from the urban freight sector. I am confident that our dynamic private sector will rise to the challenge of making Shoonya a great success.”
Commenting on the urgent need for adopting clean technologies, RMI Managing Director Clay Stranger said, “Transitioning to clean transportation is critical as India continues to move forward towards a sustainable and resilient future. Competitive economics and available technology support the full electrification of India’s urban deliver fleets on an accelerated timeline, which will create tailwinds for other market segments to follow.”
Urban freight vehicles account for 10 percent of freight transportation-related CO2 emissions in India, and these emissions are expected to grow by 114 percent by 2030. EVs emit no tailpipe emissions, which can contribute immensely to an improved air quality. Even when accounting for their manufacture, they emit 15-40 percent less CO2 compared to their internal combustion engine counterparts and have lower operational cost. The central and the state governments have introduced policies to provide upfront incentives for EVs, which will lower the capital cost by a high margin.