Shared Services Platform for Multimodal and ECO-responsible Logistics in France

Context of Transport Climate Action

The objective of the ECOPMS Project (the French acronym for: “Shared Services Platform for Multimodal and ECO-responsible Logistics”) is to offer an innovative approach to multimodal logistics systems. The project launched with a road and rail transport focus and is being extended to embrace other modes of transportation. The ECOPMS represents the establishment of a shared- service platform that manages both the physical flows of goods and the flows of information.

As logistics relate to physical transport movements as well as the flow of information, it is essential to have a high degree of traceability in both flows for multimodal transport.

In addition, ECOPMS Project aims to encourage the use of rail as an alternative mode of transportation. It also targets operators of short distance freight lines, by facilitating the combination of cargoes from different owners (shippers).

The ECOPMS Project organisation participates in the “Grenelle de l’Environnement”[1]’s ambition to promote sustainable transport and contribute to the reduction of greenhouse- gas emissions. It brings together major players in this field: Objectif-OFP (rail operator), Modalis (logistics consultant), BDRS (rail operator), Ferrivia (rail operator), ECOMODAl (multimodal transport operator), The Port Authority of Le Havre and H-LOG (multimodal systems).

Description

In order to improve the environmental performance of transportation, supply chains need to be reconfigured and eco-responsible solutions, combining rail and road, need to be developed. This combined- mode solution must offer clients a competitive service that is both simple and attractive.

The ECOPMS project has fostered research on the development of a multimodal transport solution (for rail/road/waterways) by bundling cargo from different shippers, by developing a shared information platform for them and by implementing the combined- service platform through demonstrators on certain routes. ECOPMS’s objective is twofold: to allow the different transport modes to function independently and efficiently (including the independent management of eco taxes, transportation functions and traceability) and to improve the inter-operability of transport modes in areas such as physical meetings, communications, dematerialization and traceability of products.

The shared platform developed as ECOPMS has been implemented as a “cloud” which is deployed with the help of Orange Business Services. The cloud can assemble different logistical offers, constituting a true “ecosystem” or network. Cloud computing gives access to digital services via different channels, from internet access to mobile accessibility through phone and tablet, and offers a high level of availability and security. The platform also gives immediate, wide geographical coverage.

Implementation

The ECOPMS Project focuses on three main areas:

  1. Profiling the transportation service needed, and its corresponding operational procedures, with the participation of major logistics players, and examining the possibilities for innovative technologies such as RFID ( Radio Frequency Identification of objects, used for tracking and tracing purposes), or automated coupling of rail wagons.
  2. Putting together a shared services platform, in the form of a “cloud” and its associated logistics, in collaboration with Orange Business Services.
  3. Implementing the new services platform in real- life logistics’ demonstrators using two physical locations: the route Le Havre-Paris (focusing primarily on development of information services and traceability of transport flows) and in the hinterland of the port of Marseilles-Fos (focusing on both service development and usage of the platform).

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Benefits

  • Innovation in rail services through the use of technologies that improve productivity (for instance by automatic coupling of rail wagons) and traceability (by applying RFID), and through the establishment of a cloud service.
  • ECOPMS’s use will lead to a modal shift from road transport to combined rail and road services. This may lead to a significant reduction of greenhouse- gas emissions; the extent of the impact is calculated as in the order of 200,000 to 400,000 tonnes CO2 reduction annually. Furthermore, enabling a shift to rail services has a positive effect on noise reduction and traffic safety.

Potential for scaling up

The services available through the logistics cloud developed by ECOPMS could be extended throughout Europe to promote:

  • digitalizationof transportation documents
  • traceabilityof consignments in a Europe-wide multimodal transportation chain
  • increase in business service levels available to customers
  • inter-operability and seamless data exchange between all logistics partners

The implementation of ECOPMS beyond the French case is currently being investigated in the Smart-Rail project funded by the European Horizon 2020 Programme; it explores innovative ways to improve and promote rail freight services.

Selected references

www.ecopms.fr More information www.ademe.fr/invest-avenir

[1] The “Grenelle Environnement” is a government led committee bringing together the government, local authorities, trade unions, business and voluntary sectors to draw up a plan of action of concrete measures to tackle environmental issues.

PROJECT INFORMATION

Location:

France , Paris, Le Havre , Marseille

Start:

2014

Finish:

2016

Tags:

France, mitigation, Freight, Technology, Partnerships

Organizer/s:

H-LOG, Modalis (Cloud Technical Support Orange Business Service)

Contact/s:

Olivier Maurel olivier.maurel@h-log.fr +33 6 82 598 598 Communication : Karine Soyer +33 2 35 21 41 96 ksoyer@heureuxquicommunique.com

“The ECOPMS initiative helps French OFP (short rail operators) to build an offer that is better adapted to the industry’s needs – Ferrivia Rail services company implements this concept and has already found clients that are switching over to rail transportation.”
-Jean Pierre Zerr – Sales Manager – Ferrivia SAS