New Electric Cars for Edinburgh Public Sector Fleets
A batch of small electric cars have been added to public sector fleets.
As well as six new electric cars ordered by the Council, four are to be purchased by Lothian and Borders Police and NHS Lothian.
Three charging points will be installed at Council offices, and another three at Edinburgh Napier University. All things going to plan, the new electric vehicles should be on the road this spring.
The electric car purchases were supported with a total of £207,000 from Transport Scotland as part of the Scottish Government’s Electric Vehicle Procurement Support Scheme.
The scheme allows community planning partners to fund the price difference between traditionally-powered vehicles and their electric equivalents.
The Counil's 2009 Sustainable Travel Plan commits it to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 14% by 2012. Much of this is coming from reduced mileage travelled by council staff and better fuel economy from vehicles. The new purchases will make up only a small part of the overall Council fleet of some 1,000 vehicles from small cars to lorries for collecting rubbish, but the carbon savings soon add up.
Analysis of the Council’s current electric vehicles, which have been on the road since August 2011, revealed that on average one Nissan Leaf, doing over 6000 miles a year, will reduce CO2 emissions by five tonnes.
Six similar electric cars could be estimated to reduce CO2 emissions by 30 tonnes and save 1270 gallons of petrol at a cost of £5,000. The cars generate no emissions and can be charged overnight at off-peak rates.
"The fact that electric vehicles are cheaper to run is a welcome bonus,” says Councillor Jenny Dawe, Chair of The Edinburgh Partnership, the planning group of public bodies.
It's encouraging to see governments take the lead with these small small steps toward carbon reduction. The government has invested over £8m in helping public bodies switch to electric vehicles and installing charging points.
Listening to the rhetoric, Minister for Housing and Transport Keith Brown sounds like a man on a mission: "We are committed to achieving our target of almost total decarbonisation of road transportation by 2050 and a wholesale shift to electric and other low carbon vehicles will be key to making this a reality."
Which makes it all the more surprising that the Scottish Nationalist Party are intent on cutting funding - by as much as 33% - for the greenest forms of transport, cycling and walking.