Council fleet turns over a greener leaf

The Thorpe Lane waste and recycling depot in Banbury is welcoming the latest generation of electric vehicles.

Published: Monday, 26th November 2018

Cutting both carbon and costs, the zero-emission vans are largely charged by solar panels at the depot, meaning their use involves only minimal carbon dioxide (Co2) emissions. With lower maintenance and tax costs, the vehicles are expected to pay for themselves in less than five years.

The three electric vans will save around 6.5 tonnes of Co2 per year and emit no particulates or nitrogen dioxides. Unlike previous generations of electric vehicles, the new vans have a range of up to 187 miles. Simultaneously, the council is seeking improvements to its traditional vehicles by using telematics which feed back on how efficiently their operator is driving to cut fuel usage.

Cllr Debbie Pickford, Cherwell’s lead member for clean and green, said: “Electric vehicles are becoming cheaper to run and capable of longer distances than they were even a few years ago.

“The improvements in their performance and cost-efficiency make it the right time for us as a council to capitalise on this exciting technology. With the ability to charge them from our solar panels, it really is an environmental win-win.

“It’s important that we do everything we can to protect the climate and the quality of air that the people of Cherwell breathe, and I look forward to the council welcoming more electric vehicles in the near future.”

It is expected that the three electric vehicles added to the fleet this week will be successfully trialled over the coming months, allowing for the acquisition of more battery-powered vehicles in the near future.