Highland Council welcomes phased 'greening' of it's vehicle fleet
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Highland councillors have noted the scale of achievement of staff in meeting the Traffic Commissioner’s compliance requirements for the local authority’s fleet and welcomed a phased approach to the ‘greening’ of its vehicles.
Cllr Allan Henderson, who chairs the communities and place committee, said: “Maintaining a legally safe and compliant fleet of vehicles is essential and is no mean feat for an organisation the size of Highland Council.
“This requires having over £1million funds available to maintain over 224 vehicles and also having suitably qualified staff to maintain and manage that fleet safely and effectively. I am very pleased that the council has ‘grown its own’ mechanics with the successful qualification of seven apprentice mechanics in the past four years at Wick, Brora, Fort William, Inverness and Aviemore providing a welcome addition to the in-house team.”
The council’s 224 vehicles are spread across the region at 45 licensed depots and maintained by over 40 staff at eight workshops carrying out over 10,000 work orders each year on the fleet.
Councillor Henderson added: “I am also pleased to see the reductions in carbon emissions and fuel going in the right direction for Highland Council’s fleet which complements our climate emergency declaration. Carbon dioxide emissions from petrol, diesel and gas oil use have decreased over the past eight years by around eight per cent and diesel consumption has also reduced by 10 per cent.
“The council is also working hard to reduce emissions and the cost of vehicles used by staff to carry out council business. I welcome that over £1million savings have been made in staff travel prior to Covid-19 which bodes well for the council when we come out of the pandemic.”
Members of the committee agreed a phased approach to "greening" Highland Council’s vehicle fleet. This approach will contribute towards the regional and national carbon reduction targets and ambitions with the first phase focusing on cars and light commercial fleet and the second phase covering heavy goods vehicles.