New blood delivery drone project backed by UPS
It comes as no surprise that the topic of drone deliveries made headlines again this week. This time, it is UPS leading the way in drone delivery advancements as the company made the decision to join a cooperation that will deliver blood to transfusion centers in Rwanda. UPS, together with start-up Zipline International and Gavi, plan to begin making deliveries of blood as well as vaccines to half of Rwanda’s transfusion centers in August of this year. UPS has already committed $800,000 to the project and will also provide logistical support. If successful, the drone delivery of these precious materials will prove to be 20 times faster than land deliveries.
UPS will be focusing on these types of projects in remote areas in order to gain more insights on how this technology can be used in the business to consumer arena in the United States. At the moment, restrictions from the FAA are limiting what can be done in terms of public drone deliveries. Other hurdles preventing the implementation of these automated types of deliveries include safety concerns as well as communication barriers with commercial flights. According to Logan Campbell, a chief drone consultant at Aerotas, it is best to proceed cautiously with this technology as it will only take one catastrophic event in the early stages to create a major industry setback.
Read more on this new drone project here.
Investments in Hyperloop continue to rise
The hyperloop, a topic we covered here on this blog a couple times, is gaining traction with investors. A concept that seemed like a doubtful dream several years back is starting to make significant strides toward reality. Hyperloop One, for example (previously Hyperloop Technologies), announced a successful Series B round of financing this week in which the company secured $80 million. A little over one year ago, the company was operating out of a garage. Today, Hyperloop One has 150 employees and is headed by Shervin Pishvar, an early Uber investor, as well as Brogan BamBrogan, a former SpaceX engineer. The aim of the hyperloop is to deliver passengers and cargo from city center to city center at the same speed of an airplane. According to BamBrogen, the technology will prove to be immediate, safe, efficient and sustainable.
While no predictions have been made by company officials as to when a fully functional hyperloop will become a reality, Hyperlopp One is planning full-system, full-scale tests by the end of 2016. Competition within the hyperloop industry also seems to be heating up. Hyperloop One competitors include Hyperloop Transportation Technologies and SkyTran. This competitive environment may also lead to a speedier realization of the technology. If successfully implemented, the hyperloop will have a major impact on the logistics industry.
Read more on the race to the first hyperloop here.
New program designed to help suppliers reduce carbon emissions
This week, the CDP (formerly Carbon Disclosure Project) announced its plans to help suppliers secure financing at favorable rates in order to fund efforts to reduce their impact on the environment. Managing corporate climate risks often includes understanding supplier performance with regard to environmental impact. A company’s supply chain can result in four times the amount of greenhouse gas emissions compared to its own operational emissions. However, many suppliers are not in a position or simply refuse to disclose important climate data to their corporate climates which makes improving on key environmental issues next to impossible.
This new program set up by CDP will bring major financial institutions together with the aim of providing suppliers with the necessary means to implement environmental improvement programs. According to the CDP, suppliers that took part in these programs averaged $900,000 in savings as a result of each emission reduction initiative that was implemented. In essence, investing in environmental programs seems to be a win-win situation. Corporate clients can reduce their overall environmental impact and their suppliers have the potential to save significant money once the programs are in place.
Read more on CDP’s newly developed financing program here.
Have a great weekend!