4 Ideas for a Greener Supply Chain
In 2022, Red Cross and Red Crescent staff and volunteers from over the world have contributed with innovative projects to the “Green Logistics Challenge”. Here are some great stories about projects selected by a panel of experts from the IFRC and the ICRC.
Green Logistic Challenge 1/4
Bamboo, Banana, and a Green Supply Chain
From Nepal Red Cross Society
The Bambana Box is made of bamboo and banana leaves
We have designed an innovative product, called the Bambana Box, which is made of natural biodegradable materials like bamboo and banana leaves. The Bambana box has a light weight, and also increases shelf life of the vegetables by 1-2 days because the banana leaves keep moisture.
Chitwan is a district where bananas are available all season. Bamboo crates are already used, but our innovation utilizes the beneficial aspects of banana leaves in packaging and bamboo crates in handling.
Fusion of bamboo sticks and banana leaves is a very new concept. The bamboo outer frame of the Bambana box is durable for 2 years, however normal banana leaves need to be replaced between 3 and 6 days (what becomes a tedious job).
Thanks to a new eco-friendly technology called the “banana leaf technology”, banana leaves can be kept fresh for a year.
With our trial, farmers from our community will be using the Bambana box for multiple activities. They may use it as a box to carry daily food and groceries materials from the market which accounts for 5 plastic bags in a day.
Farmers can use it as a box to carry daily food and groceries materials, which accounts for 5 plastic bags in a day.
At the end of this project, we hope to produce Bambana boxes on a large scale to gain share in the packaging market and to contribute to making a better world!
Green Logistic Challenge 2/4
A green competition to improve waste management
from Myanmar Red Cross Society
The waste management initiative includes raising awareness on waste sorting with visual materials
During the first phase of the project, we will inform all people in the building about our “Reduce, Recycle, Reuse” initiative for the offices and warehouse, for our National Society to “go green”.
Waste in the central warehouse of Myanmar Red Cross Society
We will provide training to selected people from targeted departments who will serve as waste management focal points. They will supervise practise and be a part of a waste reduction competition committee: the results of the competition will be publicised every month and will show progress in waste production and management based on data.
We will also conduct different campaigns with visual materials and storytelling, with discussions, photo exhibition, audio, and visual messages. We will engage the youth, invite experts to the office for waste management and/or the recycle service company, and we will celebrate environmental related days.
An office and warehouse waste management plan will be in place, as a deliverable of this initiative. We would like this project to be replicated at a national level so we can make a bigger impact on our society.
Green Logistic Challenge 3/4
Renewable Energy for Humanitarian Actions
from Turkish Red Crescent Society
The Solar-powered Mobile Child Friendly Space can provide energy for 8-9 hours, even after sundown.
Not only promoting a green approach to humanitarian assistance, this program also contributes to social cohesion and inclusive education.
The Solar-powered Mobile Child Friendly Space (MCFS) provides a solution that minimizes carbon emissions when delivering humanitarian service in rural areas. It has been tested and used for more than three years, meeting its own energy through solar panels. It is self-sufficient as it can provide energy for 8-9 hours even after sundown.
In addition to promoting a green approach to humanitarian assistance, this initiative also contributes to social cohesion and inclusive education. In order to reach all of the disadvantaged children, the majority of whom reside in rural or seasonal agricultural areas, three traliers have been transformed into mobile charging front space.
This approach and implementation not only preserves the environment, but also raises awareness among beneficiaries and other institutions, NGOs, and policy makers, on how we can use renewable energies in our humanitarian response.”
Green Logistic Challenge 4/4
Big changes begin with small steps
By Adele Elias and Manal Mansour
from Lebanese Red Cross
After recognizing the problem, we came up with an idea: Designing flyers on eco-driving. The idea was to distribute those flyers to the staff and place them in the Red Cross vehicles. The information in the flyers includes tips for before and during trips, such as reducing overload, performing regular maintenance, not warming up the engine before starting, mindful use of the air conditioner, driving slowly and at a constant speed. Here are the details;
Before the trip
– Reduce overload: Remove any unnecessary equipment or tools from the vehicle.
– Perform regular maintenance: Periodically maintain the vehicle and keep it in good condition (such as checking tire pressure periodically).
– Plan your trip and share it with others: Collect or share trips with colleagues, and try to avoid unnecessary trips by car.
– Avoid times of congestion: Plan your trips and try to avoid driving during peak hours.
During the trip
– Do not warm up the engine before starting: At start-up, do not wait for the engine to heat up, let it run for a maximum of 30 seconds and go. This way you will avoid wasting fuel and causing damage to the engine.
– Drive slowly and at a constant speed: Adhere to speed limits (use cruise control when available): The most effective speed is about 72-80 km/h. Driving at a speed of 112 km/h uses up to 9% more speed than at 96 km/h, and up to 15% more than 80 km/h. On the other hand, it high speed increases the risk of accidents. Constant speeds must also be maintained through gradual acceleration and deceleration, and the pedals must be handled with waiting.
– Reduce braking and use the gear to reduce speed: Slow down the car by releasing the accelerator pedal – ‘engine braking’ method-, and lift your foot off the accelerator pedal as soon as possible to ease braking use.
– Be mindful using the air conditioner: Reduce the use of air conditioner and other energy-consuming equipment, and not set it up lower than 21ºC.
– Close windows when driving at high speed: At high speeds of more than 85 km/h, it is best to avoid opening windows because open windows increase dynamic drag and consume extra fuel.
We believe that eco-driving flyers will assist our national society in driving in a more environmentally sustainable manner. Most importantly, they are inexpensive to print, and their distribution requires little effort. We expect to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by 25% as a result of this initiative, as well as raise staff awareness about reducing environmental impact while driving.
For a more sustainable supply chain
Looking for more ideas and support for a sustainable supply chain in your National Society?
A compilation of strong practices is available here.
The Sustainable Supply Chain Alliance is a cross-cutting initiative aimed at improving the environmental, social and economic impact of supply chains in the Red Cross & Red Crescent.
Access SSCA newsletters here.
Get in touch with Juan GALVEZ – Global Logistics, Procurement and Supply Chain Excellence – Global Humanitarian Services & Supply Chain Management, at IFRC : [email protected]