Guide CO2 emissions road freight transport

published: 17-10-2018

The purpose of this guide is to create a common framework and definition for measuring CO2 emissions.

Comparability due to common framework and definition In 2013 several road freight companies joined forces to develop a practical guide to calculate CO2 emissions of road freight transport. The purpose of this guide is to create a common framework and definition for measuring CO2 emissions. This will allow a standardised comparison on the quantity of carbon dioxide emitted during a given road transport service, using primary operational data that is based on the recently published European Standard CEN-EN 16258. This new guide comprises a set of practical examples and guidelines to calculate the CO2 emissions, also in a European context.

Dealing with practical issues and questions This practical guide has been prepared on behalf of the road transport sector. Many service providers and shippers struggle with all kinds of questions when designing a CO2 registration methodology. Questions regarding the starting point of measurement, the allocation of CO2 to (parts of) trips and shipments, how to deal with the return trip and the transport route using various service providers and different equipment/procedures. Furthermore, the examples are aligned with one of the projects of the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) named COFRET (Carbon Footprint of Freight Transport), financed by the European Commission (EC).

International context With the growing number of companies measuring and reporting on their emissions and the numerous carbon footprint calculation standards (models and methodologies) being developed, this demanded a practical harmonization to be used in an international context. The initiative to achieve further refinement and a good guide in conformity with the CEN-EN 16258 Standard, is therefore actively supported by Green Freight Europe and Lean and Green (Connekt) as well. The two organisations are working together to realise their joint ambition for the reduction of CO2 emission in road transport in Europe. Members of both programmes can profit from their cooperation within one another’s programmes.

Available for free The participating parties stress that this CO2 guide can be used by both large and small trucking companies. The manual is free to the public and available in electronic form through the websites of the participants in the project under the title "CO2 emissions road freight 2014”. Currently the potential for an intermodal continuation and further international alignment is under investigation.

Further information For further information and/or expressing your interest in the intermodal follow-up, please contact Françoise van den Broek (contact person on behalf of the consortium): +31 (0)6 20 40 78 71 or via email:

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