Could drone deliveries help the environment? Let’s unpack that

Could drone deliveries help the environment? Let’s unpack that

This article considers if utilizing drones for goods delivery is more efficient than traditional truck delivery, but it depends on the source of energy and size of the delivery.

Key findings

“Transportation accounts for 29% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, with medium- and heavy-duty trucks accounting for nearly a quarter of that.”

“Thanks to solar power, California frequently generates more electricity than people can use. The study in Nature Communications concluded that a one-pound package delivered by a small drone in California would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 54% compared with a diesel truck. The same delivery in Missouri, which gets most of its electricity from coal, would result in a reduction of just 23%.”

“A study published last year in the journal Transportation Research Part D concluded that drones are best at delivering a few packages at a time, while trucks are better at taking large quantities to more densely populated areas.”

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