Australian Government-owned Green Bank has announced its first investment to transform the industrial property sector with cleaner, greener assets. $50 million has been committed to one of Australia’s largest industrial and logistics funds, Charter Hall Prime Industrial Fund.
The Australian Border Force (ABF) has stated that as of 26 March, the ABF has not issued any advice relating to goods prohibited for export in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Global companies with a significant supply chain presence in China have suspended operations due to Coronavirus fears.
Air pollution in Australian cities, while by global standards is generally considered good, still remains an issue with the World Health Organisation estimating 3000 premature deaths per year linked to urban air pollution and is only going to get worse with population growth.
Long-term exposure to diesel fumes has also been linked to a raft of health issues including dementia, cancer, slower learning progress in children, smaller children in the womb and potentially contributing to long term PTSD in defence personnel.
Diesel particulates specifically are the most damaging to humans, animal and plant health, leading to a growing number of countries around the world banning the future sale of diesel or fossil-fuel cars including India, China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, as well as the European nations of Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Spain and Portugal as well as Costa Rica in Central America.
Vehicles, especially those that run on diesel, and coal-fired power stations are the main source of Australia’s nitrogen dioxide or NO2 emissions. Diesel-reducing technology provides effective solution to environmental and health risks.
While also helping the government to meet greenhouse gas emission reduction targets, an engineering solution, such as a stop start motor technology, can address both issues in significantly reducing diesel emissions in fossil-fuel powered vehicles and machinery.
Brisbane-based leading hydraulic engineer Norm Mathers has investigated the issue with the worlds’ leading scientists and engineers through his Australian innovation company Mathers Hydraulics Technologies (MHT)
The company has developed a technology that reduces diesel emissions by turning engines off when idle, yet most importantly provides instant high-speed start for immediate traffic response, thereby significantly reducing emissions in heavy traffic conditions.
Diesel reducing technology has been most recently applied by giant global machinery manufacturer Caterpillar, where hydraulic energy capture into hydraulic accumulators saved up to a massive 40 per cent CO2 emissions on hydraulic excavators. Transference of this excavator technology under the guidance of the recently retired Caterpillar hydraulic research manager Dr Philip McCluskey, a key member of the MHT team, is predicted to achieve significant similar savings in both truck and other machinery use such as wheel loaders, heavy forklifts, agricultural tractors and harvesters, etc.
“In a mining and construction environment as well as defence with heavy-use diesel-powered machines, stop-start technology as well as other proven diesel-reducing features should be mandated as a workplace health and safety requirement,” Mathers said.
The Australian Government has mandated to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 26-28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030, significantly less than the EU Commission’s target of a minimum of 40 per cent and specifically a 35 per cent reduction on trucks alone.
“In order for the government to meet these targets, which in my opinion should be in line with the global community such as the EU Commission, it is impossible unless you can capture braking energy in trucks and buses,” Mathers added.
“Specifically, it has to be applied to all Class 8 trucks and buses as well as all underground and above ground mining machinery where incidences of black lung and other fatal illnesses are on the rise due to high levels of exposure to diesel particulates.”
A key priority of the government must remain that of reducing Australia’s air pollution, primarily diesel fumes, given the proven immediate and increasing long term health risks facing Australians, according to Mathers.
Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester has confirmed the Australian Government’s support of inaugural supply chain event, MEGATRANS2018.
In a letter confirming the Government’s support, Chester cited the event’s relevance for the national freight sector and supply chain.
“This inaugural conference will bring together participants from the logistics, materials handling and freight industries to consider key issues for the freight section,” said Chester.
“This conference complements the Government develop of a National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy for Australia’s future.
“The Government looks forward to working with the freight and supply chain industry to deliver future prosperity and competitiveness. This conference will be an important component toward shaping that outcome.”
The Australian Government joins the growing list of MEGATRANS0218 sponsors, which include the Victorian Government, the Port of Melbourne and Isuzu Trucks, to name a few.
Connecting the Australian and international supply chain, the three-day expo will bring together those who plan, implement and control the efficient and effective forward flow and storage of goods, services and related information between the point of origin and point of consumption.
MEGATRANS2018 will take place over the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre’s30,000 square metres of space, 10-12 May 2018.