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The question of whether using drones instead of trucks for parcel deliveries will help to reduce carbon emissions
Currently, there are over a million drones registered in the U.S. Most of them belong to people flying them for fun, but a growing number are used being used commercially.
Companies such as Amazon, Google and many major courier companies are already exploring ways to deliver packages with drones instead of using trucks
In certain cases using electric-powered drones rather than diesel-powered trucks or vans could reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. But in other cases, using trucks – especially electric-powered ones – would be more efficient and cleaner.
The U.S. electricity sector has been rapidly transitioning to generating power with fewer greenhouse gas emissions. However, transportation is still largely powered by fuels made from oil and is now the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. Approximately 25% of transportation emissions, the equivalent of 415 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, comes from medium and heavy duty trucks, which are the vehicles that deliver freight to warehouses, businesses and consumers’ homes.
Reducing the need for trucking by delivering some packages with electric drones could save fuel, and potentially carbon emissions.
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