A new report by Prologis Research reveals that e-commerce is better for the environment than individual trips to traditional brick-and-mortar stores.

The paper, titled “Logistics Real Estate and E-Commerce Lower the Carbon Footprint of Retail,” lays out the facts behind the environmental benefits of online shopping, based on a recently released study by the MIT Real Estate Innovation Lab.

Of note, e-commerce set records during the 2020 holiday season, and package deliveries are forecast to grow by 80% over the next decade. Driven by the pandemic-induced stay-at-home economy, online sales not only surged but stayed at peak levels in 2020.

Key takeaways from the paper include the following:

  • Carbon emissions from online shopping are on average 36% lower than emissions produced by in-store trips.
  • Built-out logistics networks, which include urban fulfilment centers located near end consumers, can reduce transportation-related emissions by 50% and reduce the carbon footprint per package by about 10%.
  • In the case of direct-to-home delivery, a full standard delivery van can replace more than 100 individual car trips.

Read the full paper

Read the MIT study

Newer Article
Michael Nolte—New Director, Head of Project Management Germany


Every connection starts with a conversation. Our team is here to help.