Energy Saving Trust reviews our 700-car fleet.
Earlier this year, we wrote about the free Green Fleet Review offered by the Energy Saving Trust (Fleet News, April 19).
We decided to put the review to the test by inviting EST consultants to assess the fleet at Emap, publisher of Fleet News.
So keen is the EST to get fleets to reduce their emissions that it offers free consultancy by independent experts to help you save the planet and get the best from your fleet. For those whose bottom line is financial, there is almost certainly a cost saving to be had – as much as 10%, the EST says.
Emap’s fleet manager, Debbie Floyde, is responsible for more than 700 vehicles.
Gfleet Services, one of the EST fleet panel consultants, carried out the review.
The recommendations, contained in a 30-page report, were wide-ranging and offered a potential running cost reduction of £400,000.
There was also a significant opportunity for emissions reduction, with the review suggesting that Emap’s vehicle activities produced about 1,000 tonnes of CO2 each year – 94% coming from the Emap fleet, discounting short-term hire emissions as there was no data available.
The remainder was an estimate for drivers using private cars on business.
For staff in employee company car bands one to four, there are already restrictions on both badge and carbon emissions (an effective limit of about 180g/km).
Ms Floyde said: “The review was extremely useful and provided some very detailed analysis of our fleet and some good suggestions of where we could make further improvements. It won’t all happen at once, but we will definitely be using at least some of these ideas in the future.
“I would recommend the fleet review to any fleet operator. It helps to have a different viewpoint of the fleet and generate new ideas about how it can be improved.”
Recommendation: Improve data on the ‘grey fleet’ to ensure you can include drivers in private cars in any initiatives.
Debbie: “This is a key area for us and one which we are working on now.”
Recommendation: Include hybrids and some other very low emission cars on the choice list.
Debbie: “This was a good recommendation and we are looking at how we can adapt the fleet choice policy to include these vehicles.”
Recommendation: Establish more robust carbon emission standards with incentives for choosing cleaner vehicles.
Debbie: “Our fleet has already seen a significant reduction in vehicle carbon emissions and we will continue to work on it.”
Recommendation: Limit vehicle choice lists to 140g/km by 2010 and 130g/km by 2012. Debbie: “This is a difficult area, as we need to ensure there are enough vehicles available within these bands, but we will certainly focus on reducing fleet emissions in the long-term.”
Recommendation: From 2008, only allow cars with a Euro NCAP five-star rating.
Debbie: “As vehicles are on the fleet for three years, this would be difficult. However, as we replace the fleet, it will naturally move to a mainly five-star EuroNCAP level.”
Recommendation: Introduce fuel cards to manage business mileage more effectively.
Debbie: “This is a controversial issue because it can lead to a lot more administration. We are looking at other ways to monitor and manage mileage.”
Recommendation: Greater use of video conferencing.
Debbie: “This is something we can work on immediately and it is just a matter of promoting the facilities to people in the building and showing them the benefits.”
Green fleet reviews
Free comprehensive report covering:
- Vehicle allocation policy.
- Fuel economy.
- Mileage reimbursement policy.
- Driver education.
- Impact of technology on reducing mileage.
- Advice and information about duty of care.
- Review of business mileage in private vehicles.
- Free to 50-plus fleets (20-plus in Scotland).
Phone-based service for smaller fleets.