Green Deal Zero Emission (GDZES) City Distribution

Context of Transport Climate Action

The Green Deal approach in the Netherlands is an accessible way for companies, other stakeholder organizations, local and regional government and interest groups to work with Central Government on green growth and social issues. The aim is to remove barriers in order to help sustainable initiatives get off the ground and to accelerate this process where possible. Central Government plays a key role in this area. Initiatives often start from the bottom up, in response to societal dynamics.

The Green Deal Zero Emission Urban Logistics (GDZES) is an example of a Transport Climate Action, the public procurement of local governments together in a climate friendly way.


Green Deal Zero Emission Urban Logistics GDZES

Cities have become centers of a national economy, a phenomenon that will only grow in the years ahead. The majority of the gross domestic product is already being produced in cities. It is here that the highly-demanding consumer lives, works and plays, and demand for goods and services for this life style continues to rise. At the same time, the consumer wants the environment to be, and remain, livable, and in some cases even more than that.

Sustainable, efficient and responsive urban logistics are essential for the economic vitality and the attractiveness of cities. Logistics ensure the home deliveries of many things for many people including internet orders, helping restaurants serve their guests with fresh food, delivering to stores so they have the right levels of stock and ensuring that building or the renovation of buildings can be undertaken easily. Urbanization sets new requirements of urban mobility. The growth in customer demand makes urban logistics increasingly more intricate and responsive to needs. Indeed, the demands for accessibility, livability, safety and security in cities require a new approach to urban logistics, one that focuses on shipping more goods with fewer movements and lower emissions.

This new approach to urban logistics require innovative solutions that combine:

  • New organization (new logistics concepts, freight clustering, different methods)
  • Regulation (customized solutions, parking policy, ‘delivery windows’)
  • Technology (low-emission vehicles specially designed for urban use)
  • Responding to the changing attitude of consumers (for example the next day delivery of an internet package or other choices the consumer may make)

Green Deal initiative

At the end of 2014, 54 organizations joined Secretary of State Mansveld in signing the Green Deal Zero Emission Urban Logistics (Green Deal ZES). Apart from the Ministries of Infrastructure & the Environment, and Economic Affairs, signatories included municipalities, haulage firms, shippers, car manufacturers, research institutes and related sector and Dutch associations.

The signatories are investigating how the zero-emission delivery in urban centers can be implemented in practice, with the aim of achieving zero-emission urban logistics as far as possible by 2025. The response confirmed the interest and demand for improving the efficiencies of logistics and transporting more goods with fewer journeys and lower emissions in city environments. The Green Deal ZES participants are testing new practical

logistics solutions and improved combinations of new technologies, public-private partnership and amended regulations. Topsector Logistics is helping to develop some innovative urban logistics.

The Green Deal ZES participants are using the process of Living Labs (regional pilots) to test various improvement options for alternative ways of organizing transport logistics, and using new vehicle technology to test innovative solutions.

The government is also exploring what is feasible in terms of policy and regulation. Solutions that work and are affordable will subsequently be scaled up. Several Living Labs have already started and their development is in full swing.

The Green Deal goal

Parties to the Green Deal Zero Emission Urban Logistics program share the goal of achieving urban deliveries with the lowest possible emissions by 2025, and the ultimate aim is to reduce harmful emissions (CO2, NOx, particulate matter) from urban logistics to zero. They are also striving to limit noise emissions. Today there are no large-scale production of heavy-duty zero-emission commercial vehicles, but electric delivery vans are available. The first customized zero-emission trucks are now in use and in addition, commercial vehicles with hybrid drive trains are in development. Conventionally fuelled vehicles will be used on access motorways but zero-emission vehicles and technology will be used for the “last mile” within the city.


The reduction of the total number of vehicles needed to supply the city with goods is also an important goal. Some goods are already being delivered efficiently, particularly those served by logistics service providers and companies that have organized the (clustering/bundling) flow of goods together. The traffic for internet orders is also looking at being significantly optimized, largely in collaboration with buyers. However there are still many other possibilities where load factors can be improved .


Green Deal Living Labs

Together with the partners and via Living Labs, practicable, operational solutions for making urban logistics more sustainable are being targeted. Living Labs can generate innovative insights into the reduction of emissions and help realize zero emission urban logistics by 2025. All activities are geared towards developing new solutions within the combinations of logistics, regulation, vehicles and behavior, including the use of new vehicle technologies, improved loading schedules and the utilization of trucks, and starting up innovative logistics programs. In addition, solutions to address bottlenecks in law and legislation, and promoting and actually amending regulations, are also being looked at.

Green Deal ZES is supported by the Topsector Logistics and is testing and scaling up options, in line with the 2015 target.

Feasibility studies

The Living Labs form the initial phase of the Green Deal. This will test the concept and it will become clear whether ‘Zero Emission Urban Logistics- GDZES’ is feasible for a specific logistics flow from technical, economic, legal, safety and security aspects as well as from an enforcement perspective. On 1 January 2020 the new path towards 2025 will be reviewed on the basis of these results.

During the second phase, from 1 January 2025, the Green Deal will focus on scaling up the demonstrated concepts. The results of the Green Deal can be used in similar projects in other regions whereby the scaling up takes place without any specific government support.

Urban Logistics umbrella themes

The GDZES focuses on the main urban transport flows, these also form the main themes of the Living Labs of Green Deal ZES. A further theme targets powertrain technologies, and how these can be commercially deployed and financially aligned with different


Key areas of activity focus on:

  • Fresh deliveries in the city

Demolition and construction in the city

  • Facility support flows in the city (“office logistics”)
  • Business case of innovative vehicle technology


The following are a list of participating companies:

Albert Heijn B.V.
APC Logistiek BV
Bidvest DeliXL B.V
Binnenstadservice Nederland B.V.
Centraal Boekhuis
Combipakt Nijmegen
Coöperatieve Combipakt UA
Cornelissen Transport B.V.
De Rooy Transport B.V.
e-Traction B.V.
Gemeente Arnhem
Gemeente Delft
Gemeente Groningen
Gemeente Maastricht
Gemeente Nijmegen
Gemeente Rotterdam
Gemeente Utrecht
Gemeente Zutphen
Hema B.V.,
ING Bank N.V.
Lekkerland Nederland B.V
Min EZ
Nationaal LNG Platform (zelf toegevoegd)
Natuur en Milieu
Peter Appel Transport B.V.
RAI Vereniging
Regionale Stadsbode B.V.
St. van den Brink & Zn B.V
Stadsregio Arnhem-Nijmegen
Stichting Duurzaam Repareren
Technische Unie B.V.
TransMission B.V.
Van Gansewinkel Nederland B.V.



Signing the Green Deal ZES generates a number of significant benefits:

Green Deal benefits:

Participating in the Green Deal ZES allows a company to collaborate and actively cooperate on actually shaping the future of urban logistics.


Green Deal ZES offers a platform to develop new solutions within the combination of logistics, regulation and vehicles. 


Innovations can be applied in practice and successful projects can then be scaled up.


Via the Green Deal network the organization is in contact with more than 65 other parties and has the opportunity to share knowledge and experiences with them.

Platform for shared values and objectives;

Affiliation to the Green Deal ZES provides direction and accelerates the creation of a route towards zero-emission urban logistics, as supported by the Topsector Logistics.


Via the Green Deal network logistics solutions can be put in the spotlight, both at nationally and internationally.

Potential for scaling up

Within the Green Deal every municipality is implementing different measures set by themselves according to the local context and their own needs. In 2020 this information will be collected and shared so, they may learn what works and what does not work from each other. From 2020 – 2025 the measures that have been successful will be implemented further and scaled up

Selected references (English website will be available in January 2016)



Europe, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht, Delft, Groningen, Zwolle etc.






Europe, Mitigation, Freight, Technology, Policy, Partnership


Green Deal Zero Emission City Distribution Team, Connekt


General questions Email: SECRETARIAT: Herman Wagter (Connekt) Email: Gert-Jan Prummel (Rijkswaterstaat) Email: Erik Regterschot (RHDHV) Email:

‘We want to organise our urban logistics in a smart, healthy and safe way. With the respective parties in the city. The Green Deal ZES makes this possible via the Living Labs’.
City of Tilburg