Time is up for just-in-time

Faced with growing environmental concerns, the freight industry will be pushed to divert air cargo to sea and rail, the head of Australia Post said.

Issues related to global warming would exert an increasing influence on the way the international postal industry operates, Australia Post’s managing director Graeme John told the Sydney Morning Herald.

“One of the challenges in international logistics is going to be greenhouse [emissions],” said Mr John, who will chair an annual meeting this week in Queensland of nine of the world’s largest postal groups.

He said while the increase in international freight from consumer goods such as electronics made the industry opt for air travel due to its speed advantage, that approach has became unviable.

“Does the world want to absorb the greenhouse gas so that some kid can get his iPod a bit earlier?” he said.

“In my opinion, there’s going to be somebody that is going to, in a mandatory way, say ‘Change your supply chain’ – put it on a ship or jazz up the transcontinental railways.”

This week’s meeting of postal groups brings together members of the consortium called Kahala Post Group, which are Australia, the United States, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Spain, France and Britain.

The group was established five years ago in an attempt to better compete with private freight companies.

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