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Factors Influencing the Choice between Road and Multimodal Transportation
Linköping University, Department of Science and Technology, Communications and Transport Systems. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
2013 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Non-sustainable transportation is a great part of the stress that human activities put on the environment. Road transportation constituted 74% of the total inland tonne-kilometres in the EU during 2009, to be compared to rail transportation at 15%. In Sweden the numbers are slightly more in favour of rail transportation, but still a small share despite the fact that the European Committee promotes sustainable modes of transport. To reduce the environmental impact from the transport sector, and be able to promote the use of sustainable transport modes, it is important to gain an understanding of why the modal balance is disposed this way. By case studies and a survey, four factors, viz costs, environmental impact, attitudes and risks, and their impact on the choice of mode of transportation for companies located in the vicinity of a rail terminal are studied.

The results clearly show that the environmental impact of rail transportation is only a fraction of that of the road transportation and could possibly influence the choice of rail transportation in a positive way. However, rail transportation is less cost efficient, flexible and reliable and these aspects – despite the advantageous conditions in terms of infrastructure and geographical vicinity to a rail terminal – contribute to a negative bias towards rail transportation among companies in the study. Thus, the cost and attitudes factors counteract the choice of rail transportation. In addition, risks, as the final factor, also counteracts the choice, since it is found that respondents consider the risks of disturbances such as delays, theft and accidents to be important when considering mode of transportation and that rail transportation is viewed as lacking compared to road transportation.

This thesis contributes to the existing theory about the costs-related issues and the environmental impact of rail transportation, as well as how companies with beneficial conditions to employ rail transportation consider the mode with regards to e.g. reliability and safety, and how these factors influence the modal choice among buyers of transportation services that are located close to a rail terminal. With this knowledge, policymakers are informed of which areas to concentrate taxes, subsidizations and information to. These things are in all probability necessary if a large scale modal shift is desired. The contribution of the effect a modal shift could have on the environmental impact of the transportation might make certain practitioners that compete on a market where a low environmental footprint is a strong competitive weapon to rethink their modal choice.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2013. , 53 and Appendix p.
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Thesis, ISSN 0280-7971 ; 1635
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-102169DOI: 10.3384/lic.diva-102169Local ID: LiU-TEK-LIC-2013:69ISBN: 978-91-7519-450-9 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-102169DiVA: diva2:668777
Presentation
2013-12-16, K2, Kåkenhus, Campus Norrköping, Linköpings universitet, Norrköping, 13:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

In the printed version is the Licentiate series number and ISSN is incorrect. In the electronic version is the correct series number changed to 1635 and the ISSN to the correct one.

Available from: 2013-12-02 Created: 2013-12-02 Last updated: 2013-12-05Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. An Economic and Environmental Assessment of Intermodal Transportation Solutions for Prefabricated Building Units
Open this publication in new window or tab >>An Economic and Environmental Assessment of Intermodal Transportation Solutions for Prefabricated Building Units
2011 (English)In: Advances in Production Management Systems. Value Networks: Innovation, Technologies, and Management / [ed] Jan Frick and Bjørge Timenes Laugen, Springer-Verlag New York, 2011Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In this study the possibilities of a modal shift from road to intermodal transportation for a Swedish company producing concrete units is investigated, for the purpose of determining the economic and environmental (limited to CO2-emissions) effects such a shift would bring. The study is relevant since the case company is interested in moving their transports from the roads, and the European Union has promoted a modal shift away from road transportation to more sustainable modes.

The present day transportation, along with three plausible different intermodal transportation scenarios are analysed. The first scenario incorporates a crane-equipped truck that loads the train near the production facility, and then travels with the last load carrier to the destination, concurrently with the train, to repeat the operations in reverse order at the receiving end. The second scenario employs rail cars that can load entire trucks, including their cargo. In the third scenario, the cargo is transhipped from road to rail at terminals operated by a logistics provider.

All three intermodal scenarios reports higher costs than for road transportation, not only because of what is believed to be a too short door-to-door distance, but also due to high drayage costs. However, the environmental impact is heavily reduced for all three scenarios, in one by as much as 42%. These results contribute to the academic knowledge base of factors influencing the break even distance for intermodal transportation, and also to policy makers and practitioners in the way that the immense difference in environmental impact might be something worth to invest both time and funds in.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer-Verlag New York, 2011
Series
IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology, ISSN 1868-4238 ; Vol. 384
Keyword
Intermodal transport, environmental impact, carbon dioxide, construction industry.
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-102165 (URN)978-3-642-33979-0 (ISBN)978-3-642-33980-6 (ISBN)
Conference
IFIP WG 5.7 International Conference, APMS 2011, Stavanger, Norway, September 26-28, 2011
Available from: 2013-12-02 Created: 2013-12-02 Last updated: 2013-12-02Bibliographically approved
2. Sustainable intermodal transportation of prefabricated construction materials
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Sustainable intermodal transportation of prefabricated construction materials
2013 (English)In: Proceedings 29th Annual ARCOM Conference, 2-4 September 2013, Reading, UK, Association of Researchers in Construction Management / [ed] Smith, S D and Ahiaga-Dagbui, D D, 2013, 1383-1393 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Non-sustainable transportation is a great part of the stress that human activities put on the environment. Transportation of construction material are today performed all but exclusively by road, a mode that is cheap and fast, but at the same time heavy on emissions. In light of this, the effects of a modal change from road to combined road/rail transportation are studied from the viewpoint of a case company producing prefabricated concrete units. The study includes economic and environmental as well as operational effects. A case study is performed at the producing company by looking at actual invoices and delivery orders for the present mode of transportations. To assess the present operations, an intermodal alternative was created and studied. The comparison clearly shows that the environmental impact of the intermodal transportation is only a fraction of that of the road transportation. However, intermodal transportation is less cost efficient, flexible and reliable. The results imply the construction industry as a whole could lessen its environmental impact by employing intermodal transportation, however, without changes in regulations and policies to negate the economic disadvantage, intermodal transportation in its current state will not be a viable option for the studied company.

Keyword
Environment, greenhouse gas, intermodal transportation, prefabrication, sustainability
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-102166 (URN)978-0-9552390-7-6 (ISBN)
Conference
The 29th Annual ARCOM Conference, 2-4 September 2013, Reading, UK, Association of Researchers in Construction Management
Available from: 2013-12-02 Created: 2013-12-02 Last updated: 2013-12-02Bibliographically approved
3. Attitudes towards rail transportation among Swedish companies
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Attitudes towards rail transportation among Swedish companies
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Rail freight, and consequently multimodal (where two or more transport modes are combined) road-and-rail transportation, constituted 15% of the total tonne-kilometres in the EU during 2009, to be compared to road transportation at 74%. In Sweden the numbers are slightly more in favour of rail transportation, but still a small share despite the fact that the European Committee promotes sustainable modes of transport. To reduce the environmental impact from the transport sector, and be able to promote the use of sustainable transport modes, it is important to gain an understanding of why the modal balance is disposed this way. A survey was used to contact 665 companies in central Sweden regarding their attitude towards transportation involving rail. The unfamiliarity regarding the attributes of rail transportation was surprisingly vast among respondents, while the required transhipment between modes was considered the most negative characteristic, since many companies believed that this creates extra costs and increased door-to-door time. The lesser environmental impact was the best known characteristic and also what respondents claimed would be the reason for them to consider this mode of transport. The distilled results of the study informs academy, policy makers and practitioners about the lack of knowledge regarding rail transportation and the specific aspects that  the industry must put effort into improving if rail transportation are to be considered a advantageous option.

Keyword
Multimodal transportation, modal choice, rail transportation, survey
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-102167 (URN)
Available from: 2013-12-02 Created: 2013-12-02 Last updated: 2013-12-02Bibliographically approved
4. Influence of the Perception of Risks on the Choice of Rail Transportation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Influence of the Perception of Risks on the Choice of Rail Transportation
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In 2009, road transportation amounted to 74 % and rail to 15 % of inland transportation in the EU. Since road transportation release large amounts of emissions, it cannot be classified as a sustainable mode of transportation. The European Committee promotes the use of other modes, such as rail and inland waterways. Factors influencing the choice of transportation mode for buyers of these services are e.g. the reliability and delivery precision of the service, which in turn are affected by risks. The purpose of this study is to identify risks connected to rail freight and whether the view of these risks may deter companies from choosing rail transportation, which could possibly offer an explanation to the modal share numbers. The study employs a survey, which has been performed among Swedish companies in close vicinity of a rail terminal. It is found that respondents consider the risks of disturbances such as delays, theft and accidents to be important when considering mode of transport and that the respondents consider rail transportation to be lacking compared to road transportation. The results are valuable to policy makers who are promoting sustainable transportation, since they may explain why companies are less willing to perform a modal shift. To mitigate the risks, it is suggested that capacity of the rail network in the EU should be expanded.

Keyword
Intermodal transport, rail transport, risk management, survey
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-102168 (URN)
Available from: 2013-12-02 Created: 2013-12-02 Last updated: 2013-12-02Bibliographically approved

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