How is sustainability in logistics leading the charge towards greener supply chains in India
How is sustainability in logistics leading the charge towards greener supply chains in India

The logistics industry is the lifeblood of the global economy, providing essential support for the transportation, storage, and delivery of goods. However, this industry has also had a significant impact on the environment, contributing to greenhouse gas emissions, waste generation, and other environmental issues. As concerns about climate change and environmental sustainability grow, it's becoming increasingly important for logistics companies to adopt sustainable practices and contribute to a greener future.

One of the most significant challenges facing the logistics industry in terms of sustainability is reducing carbon emissions. Transportation, particularly road freight, is a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, accounting for around 7% of global emissions. Today sustainability has become an essential aspect of any business operation, particularly in the logistics sector, which plays a vital role in the economy. 

Moving towards a Greener Future
In India, the logistics market is expected to grow at an 8.36 percent compounded annual growth rate (CAGR), reaching $650.52 billion by 2028, up from $435.43 billion in 2023. As the sector continues to grow, it is essential for players in the logistics industry to focus on sustainable logistics practices to mitigate environmental impact and drive cost savings.

According to a study by the National Productivity Council (NPC), sustainable practices in the logistics sector can reduce logistics costs by 20-25 percent. The study further highlighted the potential for businesses to enhance their brand reputation and customer loyalty by adopting sustainable logistics practices.

The logistics sector has a significant impact on the environment due to the energy-intensive nature of its operations, including transportation, warehousing, and distribution. In recent years, companies have been exploring ways to reduce their carbon footprint by adopting sustainable logistics practices. Here are some suggestions for players in the logistics industry to drive sustainability in their operations:

  • Optimize Transportation Methods: Transportation is one of the most significant contributors to greenhouse gas emissions in the logistics sector. Adopting sustainable transportation methods, such as using electric or hybrid vehicles, can significantly reduce carbon emissions. In addition, route optimization and the use of intermodal transportation can reduce fuel consumption and costs.
  • Use Environment-Friendly Packaging: Packaging materials such as plastic, bubble wrap, and styrofoam contribute significantly to waste generation. By using eco-friendly packaging materials, such as biodegradable or recyclable materials, logistics companies can reduce waste and promote a circular economy.
  • Embrace Flexi Warehousing: Warehousing operations contribute to energy consumption and costs, particularly in terms of cooling and lighting. Adopting a flexi warehousing model, where businesses share warehouse space, can significantly reduce energy consumption and costs.
  • Emphasize Last-Mile Delivery: Last-mile delivery is the final step in the logistics chain and often requires the use of fossil fuel-based vehicles. Using alternative transportation methods, such as electric bikes or delivery by foot, can reduce carbon emissions and promote sustainability.
  • Invest in Technology: Technology, such as radio frequency identification (RFID), automated warehouse management systems (WMS), and route optimization software, can significantly reduce energy consumption, labor costs, and inventory losses.
  • Promote Sustainable Practices Across the Supply Chain: Sustainable logistics practices should be embraced across the entire supply chain. This includes encouraging suppliers to adopt sustainable practices, such as using eco-friendly packaging and optimizing transportation routes.

Adopting sustainable logistics practices can bring significant benefits to businesses, including cost savings and improved brand reputation. For instance, using electric vehicles for transportation can reduce fuel costs and maintenance expenses, while optimizing warehouse operations can reduce labor costs, energy consumption, and inventory losses.

Moreover, adopting sustainable logistics practices can help businesses to meet customer demand for environmentally responsible products and services, which can enhance brand reputation and customer loyalty.


In conclusion, the logistics sector in India is poised for significant growth in the coming years. As players in the logistics industry look to capitalize on this growth, they must prioritize sustainability in their operations. Sustainable logistics practices can drive cost savings, reduce environmental impact, and enhance brand reputation. By adopting sustainable logistics practices, businesses in the logistics sector can contribute to a greener future for India and the world.


Pic credit: Image by <a href="">Freepik</a>

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