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Council plans to reduce emissions from its fleet of vehicles to zero

News release from 03/07/2020

CAMBRIDGE City Council has started a review of its vehicles in order to reduce the fleet’s carbon emissions to zero over the next six years by purchasing electric vehicles when replacing its current internal combustion engine vans.

A report for the council’s Environment and Community Scrutiny Committee indicates that by moving towards a fleet of Ultra Low Emission Vehicles (ULEVs), the council will further reduce its total carbon output by approximately 24%.

This move will form part of the council’s Climate Change Strategy which sets out the aspiration of the council being net zero carbon by 2050, or sooner if possible. It will also help the council meet its objectives in the Cambridge Air Quality Action Plan 2018-22.

The council’s vehicle fleet currently consists of 113 vehicles, of which 10 are electric vans, 41 are Ultra Low Emission Zone-compliant, and a further 10 have stop/start technology to reduce their emissions.

Vehicles play an important role in delivering council services, including in cleaning and maintaining streets and open spaces, providing maintenance and repair for council homes and for its pest control services.

The proposed review suggests a number of ways the council will reduce emissions from its fleet, both immediately and over the next six years, including by:

  • Changing how council services use vehicles, such as by planning journeys more efficiently and adopting more efficient driving practices
  • Reducing the size of the fleet where appropriate
  • Ultimately replacing the entire fleet with ULEVs which will reduce the council’s carbon footprint, as well as associated costs for fuel and maintenance

Cllr Rosy Moore, Executive Councillor for Climate Change, Environment and City Centre, said: “This review of the council’s vehicle fleet will go a long way to helping us achieve our goals on reducing our carbon emissions and improving Cambridge’s air quality in the next few years.

“Carbon emissions from the council’s buildings and vehicles have fallen by 25% over the last five years thanks to a combination of actions we have taken and the greening of the national grid, but we know there is more we must do.

“Switching our fleet over to Ultra Low Emission Vehicles will be beneficial to the council and the city in many ways. We will be working closely with other businesses and organisations to encourage them to reduce their own emissions as a matter of priority, including by signing up to the forthcoming Cambridge Climate Charter.”