Sustainable Supply chain activities havebeen fundamental to economic development and social well-being of countries.Mckinnon (2010) acknowledges that in the last 5 decades, this has gainedprominence as a major field of academic study and as a key determinant of, forexample, business performance.
As living things, our existence andsurvival totally depend on the environment we live in. The Global Risk Report (2017)has suggested an increasing concern about extreme weather conditions andclimate change. From droughts to hurricanes and floods, smog to forest fires,these events killed thousands of people- and have been directly linked toclimate change. The recent weather and climate deviations points to the effectof global warming, which results from the long and sustained depletion of theozone layer and emission of gases (GHG, SO2, NOx). Thereis therefore the need to assess the impact of our actions on the environment.There is a global drive towardssafeguarding the environment for future generation.
However, in Ghana thereseems to be little or no initiative geared towards achieving the Globalsustainable goals. Logistics, and specifically transportrepresenting its most physical component, has accordingly received muchattention in the sustainable drive in recent years, due to the numerousexternal effects and the widespread effects on virtually all individuals (vanLier & Macharis, 2013). The development of sustainable strategies to combatthe consequences of the harmful effects of transport in logistics is what isreferred to as “Green LogisticsDevelopment”. Green logisticsessentially focuses on ways to reduce the environmental effects of logistics. It is largely studied in literature in theinternational context (Confente & Russo, 2009). However very littleresearch exists to better understand role of green logistics in sustainableissues in Ghana.
The focus of this study would be to assessand investigate the state of greenlogistics in Ghana, which still constitutes an unexplored field. We wouldalso like to contribute to knowledge advancement by considering the following; (i) enhancing awareness and knowledge ofpotential and benefits of green logistics policies in the nation and that couldbe adopted by other stakeholders within the sub-region; (ii) identifying opportunities that can bedeveloped into actions in practice; and(iii) shaping strategies for development ofgreen freight and logistics for policy makers and businesses in the privatesector is an urgent need.BACKGROUND AND SIGNIFICANCELogistics is the backbone of industry andcommerce. As a discipline, it describes the management and coordination ofactivities along supply chains (Fransoo etal., 2014). The Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (2007)describes Logistics as “the part of supply chain management that plans,implements, and controls the efficient, effective forward and reverse flow andstorage of goods, services and related information between the point of originand the point of consumption, to meet customer’s requirements.
“In the context of increasingregionalization and globalization in recent years, freight and logistics havebeen growing in several areas, (AITC) 2017. It is well known that freighttransport increases the amount of pollution, traffic congestion, gas emissionsand energy consumption (Confente & Russo, 2009). These environmentalproblems have also an impact on social issues, such as health, an increase ofdiseases, accidents,(Confente & Russo, 2009).Green logistics refersmainly to environmental issues related to transportation, material handling andstorage, inventory control, warehousing, packaging, and facility locationallocation decisions (Min & Kim, 2012).There is also evidence that much of theenvironmental footprint of logistics operations is tied to short distances anddistribution.
But the volume of emissions can vary greatly, depending on themode of transport. Within logistics, transport creates the largestenvironmental footprint (Fransoo, 2014). GreenLogistics could therefore provide a framework that could be used toidentify and assess emerging sustainable development procedures to contributeto the important objective of “Green Growth.”The growing environmental concern ofcitizens and governments and the widespread introduction of the concept ofsustainability have simultaneously placed increasing pressure on public andprivate activities to take all effects related to such activities into account,as elaborated on by Macharis and Van Mierlo (2013). LITERATURE REVIEWWith environmental problems such as globalwarming, ozone depletion, solid waste disposal and air pollution on theascendency, business organisations are the source of most of the environmentalproblems (Rozar, et al., 2013).
Environmental degradation is a key issueof concern for governments, societies and business organisations in the world. Theterm sustainability has begun to appear in the literature of businessdisciplines and companies also are starting to adopt this term (Aref et al., 2005.
;Sarkis, 2002; Hill, 2001; Norman and MacDonald, 2004; Carter, 2008). The Green Logistics is one of three focusareas for the World Bank’s Multi-Donor Trust Fund for Sustainable Logistics(MDTF-SL). The goal of this pillar is to support activities in low income anddeveloping countries that contribute to the development of transport corridorsand logistics services, while minimizing the carbon footprint and gasesemission associated with the delivery of goods (Fransoo et al., 2014).Confente & Russo(2009)developed a conceptual research in which they defined green logistics as the sum of three aspects including reverselogistics, city (urban) logistics and intelligent distribution. Seroka-Stolka’s study in 2014 also expanded theaspects of green logistics to include corporate environmental strategiestowards logistics and reduction in transport costs.Green logistics consists of all activitiesrelated to the eco-efficient management of the forward and reverse flows ofproducts and information between the point of origin and the point ofconsumption whose purpose is to meet or exceed customer demand (Mesjasz-Lech,2011).
It is considered as an element of sustainable development that examineways of reducing externalities (taking external costs of logistics associatedespecially with the environmental issues such as climate change, pollution andnoise into account) and achieving a more sustainable balance betweenenvironmental, economic and social objectives (Seroka-Stolka, 2014). Schmied (2010) describes the factors affectinggreen logistics as; company, customers, politics, and society. McKinnon, (2010) hasestablished that “Green Logistics” isan emerging concern of private operators