freight train at sunset

Report | 2021

Fast Tracking Freight in India: A Roadmap for Clean and Cost-effective Goods Transport

By NITI Aayog, RMI India, and RMI
Download the report below

Freight transportation plays a crucial role in supporting the economic development of a nation, boosting its logistics and industrial competitiveness, and satisfying the daily needs of its citizens. Due to the rising demand for goods and services, India’s freight transport demand has been growing at 5 percent since 2015 and is expected to grow rapidly over the next three decades. Although freight transport is an important pillar of the Indian economy, it can also have negative consequences such as high logistics costs, rising CO2 emissions, and worsening air quality leading to poor public health.

India can address these negative impacts through three main opportunity areas:

  1. Improve share of rail freight transport
  2. Optimize truck use
  3. Increase the uptake of zero-emissions vehicles and fuel economy improvement technologies

In this report, NITI Aayog and RMI outline solutions for the opportunity areas mentioned above. These solutions can enable the freight transport ecosystem in India to become more cost-effective, optimized, and cleaner.

Together, these opportunities can unlock 10 gigatons of cumulative CO2 emission savings between 2020 and 2050. This can help India achieve its goal of reducing the logistics costs from 14 percent of GDP to 10 percent, and will reduce nitrogen oxide and particulate matter emissions by 35 percent and 28 percent  respectively until 2050.

India tracking freight graph