COASTAL shipping operator Pacifica Shipping, an operating division of Swire Shipping, has launched a project to combine battery electric trucks with coastal shipping.

The project aims to create what Pacifica claims would be one of New Zealand’s lowest emission supply chains for heavy freight by linking zero-emission battery-swapping, fully electric trucks, with coastal shipping. 

Co-funded by the Energy Efficiency & Conservation Authority (EECA), the initiative would see the deployment of battery electric trucks for the first and last mile transportation of products, with low emission coastal shipping for ocean freight.  

It should see a significant reduction in carbon footprint by eliminating an estimated 5100 conventional combustion engine truck movements and reducing carbon dioxide emissions by up to 250 tonnes annually. 

Mainfreight and Hilton Haulage have been brought on board as inland transportation partners, and Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) as product partner.

The first phase of the project would see the start of Mainfreight operating battery electric trucks between CCEP’s Mount Wellington site and the Port of Auckland. 

Operations would then be expanded to Christchurch, with Hilton Haulage operating between Lyttelton Port Company and CCEP’s Woolston site. 

Two XCMG E700 electric trucks will be deployed to move full containers for the first and last mile at the ports of Auckland and Christchurch.

Country manager at New Zealand Swire Shipping Alistair Skingley said Pacifica Shipping was a strong supporter of the transition to a low emissions future.  

“This groundbreaking initiative, the first of its kind in New Zealand, leverages coastal shipping to create a supply chain characterised by the lowest carbon emissions for heavy freight shipments within New Zealand,” he said.  

“We express our sincere gratitude to CCEP and EECA for placing their trust in us. We hope this initiative inspires more freight shippers and operators to embrace the environmentally friendly blue highway and the benefits that coastal shipping can bring to their supply chains.” 

Director of CCEP NZ Supply Chain Bryce Retter said: “Coca-Cola Europacific Partners is on a journey to reduce emissions by 30% by 2030, and to reach net zero emissions by 2040 here in New Zealand. We’re pleased to be the product partner in this groundbreaking initiative as it enables us to continue to make progress on our sustainability goals while creating value for our customers and consumers”.