Nowadays, the majority of the population in Europe lives in urban areas and the bulk of industrial production is dispatched to these areas.
On the other hand, the global urban and economic system became functionally specialized, with a global division of production and its associated freight. All those elements explain the necessity of an efficient, intense and frequent freight urban distribution system that requires an improvement of the terrestrial transport, to respond to citizens’ necessities.
The traffic of goods in the cities produces 20% of the CO2 emissions and up to 60% of PM10 (suspended particles), among other pollutants.Between all the urban distribution forms, refrigerated distribution of these goods has the greatest environmental impact, given that to the pollution associated with the consumption of fuel must be added all emissions produced by the self-cooling refrigerators equipment and the noise produced by these systems and diesel vehicles.
The refrigerated freight distribution has to be improved as this type of transportation is in development and supposes an increase of the problems associated.
In fact, the list of freight that has to be refrigerated is increasing and the requirements regarding the physical distribution phase are more important. It is also due to the rise in the quality of life that implies growing consumption of perishable (refrigerated) food, ingredients, etc.