Autoproduction of Renewable Energy: Revolutionizing Road Business Models

Expert opinion

Tariel CHAMEROIS - Head of sustainability France & Maghreb - DB Schenker
Published on:
Visuel principal articleblog DB Schenker

Heading towards new economic models of renewable energy in local self-production/self-consumption for road freight transport.

In this era of energy transition, self-production and local self-consumption of renewable energies (EnR) play a crucial role in the transformation of road freight transport warehouses. This article explores how this development contributes to the reduction of Greenhouse Gases (GHG) and creates new economic models in the sector.

Focusing on sustainable energy production to power the warehouses of tomorrow

The production of Renewable Energy (EnR) in goods transport warehouses generally involves the use of 5 renewable energy sources: solar, wind, hydraulic, biomass and geothermal. This transition is especially marked by the growing use of solar panels and encouraged by French regulations.

Renewable Energy for sustainable mobility

This renewable energy production is no longer just intended to supply buildings with heating, air conditioning, lighting, etc. It also powers mobility, ranging from electric cars to heavy goods vehicles, thus transforming the energy paradigm of companies in the sector. The switch from internal combustion of diesel vehicles to electric alternatives directly contributes to the reduction of GHG emissions associated with road transport.

The economic model based on the importation of fossil energy then becomes obsolete, in favor of self-production and self-consumption of electricity generated locally, which has several advantages. For a company like DB Schenker this is an opportunity: “the building can become a profit center! ".

Benefits of new energy management for freight transport companies

1. Controlling energy costs

Local renewable energy production promotes long-term control of energy costs, which is significant given the increase in electricity costs. This production also makes it possible to avoid the transport of the latter and the payment of associated taxes (TURPE and Excise). It also facilitates the release of funds to invest in expensive charging infrastructure for electric vehicles (wiring, transformers, terminals and structural work).

2. Flexibility and energy resilience

Local renewable energy sources and their storage types provide increased flexibility and resilience in the event of outages or price fluctuations on the traditional electricity grid. This ensures continuous power for transportation and logistics operations, which is crucial to maintaining the supply of our Supply Chain serving our customers around the world.

3. Reduction of carbon emissions

Replacing internal combustion vehicles with locally powered electric alternatives reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, thus helping to mitigate the environmental impacts associated with road transport, which account for around 1/3 of GHGs in France.

Energy transition: Long-term economic impact for freight transport

Ultimately, the depreciation of renewable energy installations could lead to a significant reduction in the energy costs of freight transport, which today represent around 25% of costs in its diesel version. Energy strategy is becoming a determining element of carrier sustainability, especially with the planned transition to cleaner energies.

The sustainable choice of DB Schenker France for green logistics

DB Schenker France is embracing this transition by combining local renewable energy production, its storage and the electrification of its fleet. This approach aims to offer competitive transport to our customers in the long term while reducing scope 3 CO2 emissions from our shipper customers.

DB Schenker France is making this vision a reality with the installation of photovoltaic panels on several of its sites (Marseille, Lyon, Lille, etc.), underlining its commitment to a sustainable energy future.


The move towards self-production and self-consumption of renewable energy in freight transport warehouses opens the way to a major transformation, both environmentally and economically. It is a revolution towards sustainable practices in the logistics and freight transport sector.

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