As of the 1 June 2022 companies can apply to the Dutch government for a purchase subsidy to close the gap between the cost of a diesel truck and a zero-emission truck. This move makes a green, more sustainable freight and transport industry in the Netherlands a possibility.

This is welcome news as the Netherlands aims for at least 30 municipalities to introduce a zero-emission zone by 2025. Rotterdam is one of these municipalities actively working with the logistics sector to lower its carbon footprint. Logistiek 010 is an umbrella community that provides guidance and advice to companies in Rotterdam around more sustainable and greener logistics. Of the 1700 members, 557 now have an “Eco-star” rating, meaning that these are companies actively working towards making their fleet and logistics processes more eco-friendly.

Of course, one of the biggest barriers is the cost; the cost of a cleaner battery electric or hydrogen truck can be 3 to 5 times that of a diesel truck, a gap which has proven to be prohibitive for many businesses despite their greener intentions. While the subsidy varies depending on company size and vehicle type, it now does make the goal of cleaner trucking and zero-emission zones a reality. However, in order for this scheme to be a success, the Dutch government must also ensure that current charging infrastructure can keep up with the increasing demand.

The total budget set aside by the Netherlands for the  Zero-Emission Trucks Purchase Subsidy Scheme (AanZET), is €13.5 million for 2022. Based on this figure, the Netherlands could increase the number of emission-free trucks from 300 to 600 units by next year, which does bring cleaner, greener logistics a step closer.