7 Virtual traffic: e-commerce, transport and distribution

Peter James and Peter Hopkinson

Introduction

E-business is already changing the movement of goods, components and materials, and could transform it over coming decades.1 These changes raise many importantquestions for sustainable development, including the following.

  • Will residential areas be overwhelmed by fleets of white vans delivering growing volumes of internet-ordered goods?
  • Will internet shopping mean that consumers keep their cars parked and use their extra time at home or in their neighbourhood – or will they find replacement destinations or activities to drive to?
  • Will there be a network of local drop-off and collection points for goods which can't be delivered to homes and, ...

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