As of 13 January 2022, Kombiverkehr KG in Frankfurt now serves the Cobelfret Terminal in Rotterdam, where freight can be transferred to ferry connections to the UK. This is the first time customers have been able to reach London, Dublin and Killingholme from this terminal. Kombiverkehr is offering this new intermodal service in partnership with TFG Transfracht GmbH, a wholly owned subsidiary of Deutsche Bahn operating out of Hamburg. Intermodal (combined) transport makes it possible for load units to be transferred between modes of transport without transhipping the freight in the load.
The link operated by the partners, which connects the Nuremberg TriCon Terminal and Rotterdam, is offered in both directions five times a week from Monday to Friday. Previously, only maritime containers could be transported. The increased train capacity using pocket wagons now also allows semi-trailers and swap bodies to be carried. The new link also happens to be good for the environment. An additional 20 truckloads can be shifted to rail each day, saving up to 1,500 tonnes of CO2 per week. The Kombiverkehr and TFG Transfracht service is another transport option with comparatively lower emissions than road haulage. The intermodal transport solution sustainably shifts 866 truck kilometres between Nuremberg and Rotterdam to rail.
This shift improves the environmental footprint of all participants in the value chain, as rail transport generates up to 80% lower carbon emissions than road. "By offering this new continental train service, we are also giving our freight forwarding customers a clear solution to the loading capacity and truck driver shortage problem," says Alexander Ochs, Managing Director at Kombiverkehr. "We've managed to provide end-to-end UK service with our new Cobelfret product while also offering attractive windows for collection and unloading."
Expanded selection and frequency
In addition, the intermodal transport solution also reduces noise pollution, eliminates traffic and customs processes on the motorway, simplifies planning and ensures set departure times. "For the first time, we're linking continental and maritime cargo flows, giving our customers even more frequent departures and the widest possible choice of terminals in Rotterdam and Antwerp. This is entirely in line with efforts to shift transport from road to environmentally friendly rail," says Philipp Best, Head of Sales at TFG Transfracht, about the climate-friendly transport solution. Other green solutions, such as 100% carbon-free rail and road transport, are also available at any time.
Sights set on climate targets
According to Best, expanding rail services in this way also helps to achieve the targets of the Paris Climate Agreement and is in line with the company's sustainability strategy. TFG's AlbatrosExpress trains replace some 600,000 truck journeys every year, avoiding around 400,000 tonnes of carbon emissions. In 2021, this was equivalent to transporting nearly one million twenty foot equivalent units (TEU). And DB Cargo, which handles all of Deutsche Bahn's national and international rail freight activities, is also a strong combined transport provider. Including TFG, it takes 6.3 million truck journeys off the roads each year. That's equivalent to a reduction of two million tonnes of CO2 compared with truck transport.