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What is my shipment’s carbon footprint?

What is my shipment’s carbon footprint?

The Footprint Challenge

Are you curious to find out how big the carbon footprint of your import, export or cross-trade shipment is? Ritra Cargo can tell you. From now on, you will be able to find the CO2 emissions for each shipment in our updated TRACOS Lite portal. This is handy for communicating with your customers or if you just want to know how “green” your operations are.


Carbon emissions per section of route

How big is the carbon footprint of my cargo transport? As international freight forwarder, we’re hearing this question more often. That’s why, with the help of Rozwitha Roos, we developed a tool for calculating CO2. What’s special about this tool is that it tells you exactly what your carbon emissions are for each section of the transport route. You will find the following calculation results in our TRACOS Lite portal:

  • The main transport: sea freight, air freight, rail transport or road transport
  • Transhipment for transport in the Netherlands
  • Transport in the Netherlands by lorry, train or inland shipping vessel
  • Total CO2 emissions per shipment


By gaining insight into the emissions for each section of the transport route, it becomes easier to reduce your carbon footprint. Many shippers also use this information when communicating with their customers.


How many trees will this “cost” me?

Planting trees is a well-known way of compensating for CO2 emissions. Trees absorb carbon dioxide and turn it into oxygen. A single tree can absorb 20 kilograms of carbon dioxide emissions per year. Would you like to import T-shirts from Xiamen and compensate for this by planting trees (or having trees planted for you)? Then you can transport the following quantities of t-shirts for each tree:

  • 3 kg of T-shirts by air freight
  • 45 kg of T-shirts by sea freight
  • 92 kg of T-shirts by rail


It’s quite clear that the method chosen for the main transport has a big impact on the carbon footprint.

Sometimes the way the cargo is sent from the port to its final destination can also make a big difference. An alert shipper can easily save tens of kilograms of carbon emissions at this stage. For example, would you like to ship 10,000 kilograms of T-shirts from the port of Rotterdam to Alphen aan de Rijn in the Netherlands? This would involve the following emissions and compensations:

  • By lorry including transhipment: 96 kg CO2 = 4.80 trees
  • By train including transhipment: 93 kg CO2 = 4.65 trees
  • By inland shipping including transhipment: 76 kg CO2 = 3.80 trees


In this case, the choice of lorry or inland shipping for the final shipment makes a significant difference in carbon emissions: exactly 20 kilograms or one whole tree.


CO2 emissions, ETA, delays and more

In Ritra Cargo’s TRACOS Lite portal you can find an overview of your shipments at the PO level. You will immediately see the amount of carbon emissions produced by your shipment. In addition, the TRACOS Lite portal offers you many more valuable insights. For example, it’s also possible to follow the status of your shipment – from the loading port to the ultimate delivery at the final destination. You will be able to see, among other things:

  • (Adjusted) ETA
  • Any potential delays
  • Schedule for the delivery of your goods


Access to the TRACOS Lite portal is free of charge and available to all Ritra Cargo’s customers. Still not received your login information? Request it now!



Current standard values were used for calculation of CO2 emissions. This means that the CO2 calculating tool gives you a reliable representation of real emissions. Due to the wide variety and complexity involved, at this time it is not possible to calculate the CO2 emissions for pre-transport in country of origin.


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