Council fleet driving down emissions and costs

Electric vehicle charging capabilities at our Hollingdean depot have been transformed by a £392,000 investment from the Carbon Neutral Fund.  

The Cityclean depot has now 32 7kw electric car and van chargers and 11 22kw electric heavy goods vehicle (HGV) chargers, as well as a rapid charger which charges a vehicle to 85% full in 45 minutes and to 100% full in 1 hour and 30 minutes. The trucks can run for up to 2 days on a single charge while the vans can run for up to 5 days.  

By investing in electric vehicle charging facilities at the Hollingdean depot, we expect to save around £16,000 per year in fuel costs for each Cityclean truck and around £4,500 per van.   

Our current EV fleet consists of: 

  • 2 HGV recycling collection vehicles (RCVs); 
  • 32 vans; 
  • 6 cars; 
  • and 1 ride-on mower. 

In 2023 we are due to expand our fleet by adding:  

  • 2 HGV RCVs; 
  • 4 communal bin lorries; 
  • 1 HGV toploader; 
  • 6 cars;  
  • and 2 Cityparks low floor equipment transport vehicles. 

Support for staff 

We are fitting battery monitors to vehicles to support drivers with changing to electric and introducing one-on-one training covering driving styles that increase the battery life.  

All drivers will also be given regular on job training, introducing them to new driving techniques, energy saving tips and safer driving skills. 

Next steps 

We’re aiming add more solar panels to the workshop roof, which is currently 50% covered. On good days, this produces 63kwph which will charge 4 trucks, but with full coverage we expect to generate up to 130Kwph which will charge 7.6 trucks. 

Further ahead we hope to standardise our fleet, reducing the types and number of vehicles we have by learning from other organisations with large workforces and fleet. We are preparing a report which will be presented to councillors for approval to reduce the size and costs of our fleet. 

Cutting emissions 

Councillor Steve Davis, the councillor leading on transport, said: “By expanding the electric vehicle charging infrastructure at our Hollingdean depot, we’re able to cut emissions which in turn reduces the environmental impact of the council’s fleet.  

“And adding solar panels to the workshop roof means we can generate our own sustainable energy to help power the Cityclean fleet.  

“These changes will help Brighton & Hove achieve its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2030 while creating a healthier city with cleaner air for the benefit of all communities.”

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