With the arrival of the first of Toyota Prius full hybrid hatchbacks, and a flood of support from bluechip corporate clients, eCorporate Travel believes it is well on the way to achieving its goal of becoming a carbon-neutral chauffeur company.
The company, based in Loanhead on Edinburgh’s southern outskirts, is a self-contained offshoot of Edinburgh Executive Travel, which has been offsetting its saloon and people-carrier emissions for the past two years. Although eCorporate Travel has been building the foundations since the beginning of 2010, it began operations at the start of February with its white Toyota Prius T4 five-door hatchbacks, with new livery and logos.
The service is already being used by bluechip corporate clients in Edinburgh and the Lothians, and while the company has committed to taking on 14 Prius cars this year, it is ready to order more if other prospective clients come on board.
“The feedback has been phenomenal,” says managing director James Ritchie. “Almost every company now has a corporate responsibility on green issues. By using eCorporate Travel, they can reduce their carbon footprint while not compromising on service or price.
“Our proposition isn’t just about the environment but about exceptional service. Our fully uniformed, courteous chauffeurs assist our clients throughout their journey. Our clients get a high level of service, as well as the environmental kudos. Every eCorporate Travel client will receive a regular report showing the carbon savings they are making compared with their previous transport arrangements.”
eCorporate Travel says that carbon emissions using the Toyota Prius (89g/km) undercut by 62 per cent those of a standard hackney cab (244g/km). Assuming an average of eight 10km journeys a day, the company estimates that this would save 3000kg of carbon dioxide a year – equivalent to the energy needs of a three-bedroom house for six months.
Through Trees4Scotland, the company also promises to plant enough native trees to offset more than double the expected emissions of its clients, and aims to achieve “Oak Status” for each qualifying corporate. This would signify the offsetting of 73 tonnes of carbon dioxide – the equivalent of driving 820,000km in a Toyota Prius.