[Ghostwriting for the Chief Cargo Officer of Swiss Airlines, Oliver Evans. 75 Blogs already published: swissworldcargo.com/blogistics]
Imagine we fail
Oliver Evans on Friday, February 4th, 2011 10:30 AM
What would the world in, say 2025 look like if we fail as an industry to implement e-Freight once and for all, full scale, round the globe? Well, nobody knows obviously, but I wouldn´t be the least surprised, if by 2025 many of us will have conversations much like this one:
Madeleine (my yet to be born granddaughter, then 10 years old): “Hi Granddad, what´s that you´re doing?”
Me: “Oh well, just a bit of work…”
Madeleine: “I can see that!” (Sally is smart and she knows it) “But you are using paper!” She pronounces “paper” like we today would pronounce “child labour”.
Me: “Yes, hum, tja, it´s paper, right.”
Madeleine: “But… is this legal? I mean, it´s made out of trees, isn´t it?” After saving the Siberian tiger, most of the whales and thousands of other endangered species, mankind has lately turned to saving forests which makes paper the ebony of the 2020’s.
Me: “Yes, my dear, it is legal, we do have a special permission and…”
Madeleine (wrinkling her little nose): But it´s so…, so old-fashioned, Granddad! Didn´t you just buy two of those super-cool new hypersonic freighter planes that burn only hydrogen and fly without pilots? Those are awesome! My teacher says, they do not produce any emissions at all! That´s good for the trees – and for us!” I told you, she´s smart.
Me: “Yes, well, not me personally, but our company bought them, that´s right.”
Madeleine: “And you still use paper to tell everybody, what´s on board of these planes, where it goes to, and all that?” She knows all about my job.
Me: “You know, it is complicated…”
Madeleine, looking me expectantly in the eye: “Yes?”
Me: “Well, sweetie, actually…”
Madeleine, looking very disappointed to her mother, who just entered my little home office, saying in that accusing voice of hers: “Mom, Grandpa is killing trees and it´s good for nothing!”
Me: “Oh come on, that´s not fair! We always used paper and it always worked very well!
Madeleine: Is it quicker than computers?
Me: “Hum… – no.”
Madeleine: “More reliable? More secure? More convenient?”
Me: “No, no, and, errh, no.”
Madeleine, clearly saving her best for last:
“Better for the planet?”
Me: “Well, actually, if you take into account, that, hum…”
Madeleine, turning triumphantly to her mother: “See?”
And off she dashes.
It´s true, we as an industry could go on like we do today almost forever without a full commitment to e-Freight. But there will come a day when we will not only have to answer the questions of short-sighted, short-term focussed cost optimisers but to Madeleine and her friends. And honestly speaking, I´d rather have better answers by then, than I have today.
Thank you for tuning in.