Evaluating the External Costs of Trailer Transport: a Comparison of Sea and Road

The objective of this study is to deduce the comparative level of external costs per transported trailer within a context where an existing freight transport chain is replaced by one that includes greater use of shipping. Using both Sweden’s national guidelines for cost–benefit analysis (ASEK) and the European guidelines (Ricardo), the external costs of two alternative options are evaluated. The external costs for a road and shipping option are estimated to be lower than for the direct shipping option under Swedish guidelines, but higher under the European guidelines. However, the results favour the road and shipping option in preference to the direct shipping option under both Swedish and European guidelines when internalizing taxes and fees are accounted for. This is the case even where the shipping mode is compliant with the most stringent environmental regulations. The paper concludes that the evaluation system employed can have a fundamental impact on the outcome of a CBA and that the Swedish guidelines (ASEK) could by improved by incorporating specific values for air pollution from ships (particularly NOx emissions) and a system for regularly updating emission factors.


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  • Accession Number: 01700318
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Feb 9 2019 3:03PM