90 tons Truck SCA Photo: Erik Viklund
Load trucks with more timber. Then use fewer of these trucks. That is the simple but brilliant idea behind a SCA-partnered project that saves both the environment and money.SCAs timber truck on the road in northern Sweden.
The 30-meter-long pilot truck has traveled more than 1.35 million kilometers between SCA’s sites in Munksund, in far northern Sweden, and the company’s timber terminal in Överkalix 170 kilometers away. The truck has been in service for a little over five years and carries four stacks of timber instead of the traditional three, giving the vehicle a gross weight of 90 tons. So far, it has saved 140,000 liters of diesel and 690,000 kilometers compared with transportation using conventional 60-ton trucks.
Reduces carbon dioxide emissions

The pilot truck is part of the One More Stack (OMS) project initiated by Skogforsk, the Forestry Research Institute of Sweden, of which SCA is a partner. The objective of the project is to make forest transportation in Sweden more effective. And all figures point in the right direction. The OMS truck reduces carbon dioxide emissions by 20 percent compared with 60-ton trucks carrying the same volume.SCA’s OMS truck has a sister pilot truck, which might be mistaken for a conventional 60-ton timber truck as it is the same length, 24 meters. It looks the same but carries larger stacks (LS) of timber, for a total gross weight of 74 tons. The extra weight is distributed through an extra pair of axles. Another difference is that the LS truck uses rapeseed methyl ester fuel, with potential to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by half. The LS truck went into service in October 2013 and is used in the province of Ångermanland.

“It’s an environmental project,” says Niklas Fogdestam, project manager of the project at Skogforsk. “It’s all about reducing carbon dioxide emissions. By default, it’s also a matter of costs, since it’s cheaper to use less fuel and fewer vehicles. For me personally, it feels great to reduce the carbon footprint in such a concrete and tangible way.”

20 percent less environmental impact
Thomas Hedlund, logistics manager at SCA, says the move is part of SCA’s ambition to reduce its environmental impact by 20 percent before 2020. “Another positive effect can be seen in less intensity in traffic,” Hedlund adds. “The risk of accidents is reduced with fewer vehicles on the road, and the need for fewer vehicles reduces the costs.”

More effective trucks are crucial for the Swedish forest industry. Trains are already used for 49 percent of SCA’s timber transports, but Sweden’s forests don’t have enough railroad tracks to raise that number to 100 percent.