LEADING engineering services provider, Edwin James Group, has launched a pilot programme that will eventually replace around 70 diesel vans per year with eco-friendly alternatives.
The new vans mark the initial step towards electrifying the entire van fleet, with engineers currently testing their performance and suitability for various operational requirements. The project aligns with Edwin James Group’s commitment to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) principles and the aim to reduce carbon emissions by 50% before 2025 and achieve net-zero emissions by 2030.
With over 1,000 employees spread across the UK, the company operates a fleet of 250 (230 vans and 20 cars). The transition to electric power has already begun, and the company car fleet is now all-electric.
Mark Longley, corporate services director at Edwin James Group, explained the process and the thinking behind the pilot project, “84% of our carbon footprint comes from our fleet, so that is where a lot of our carbon reduction efforts are being focused.
“All our vans are fitted with trackers, so we know the mileages and the driving patterns that we carry out on a daily basis. What we are analysing now is when and where we can reliably make the switch to electric vans based on the available charging infrastructure and work patterns we perform.
“If the pilot is successful, we will change vehicles as their leases come to an end, meaning that by 2027 the whole light commercial fleet will be electric, which is in line with where we want to be from a carbon reduction viewpoint.”
Fleet Alliance manages the Edwin James fleet on an outsourced basis, providing vehicle procurement and conversions, leasing solutions and accident management services. CEO, Andy Bruce commented, “We are seeing growing numbers of our customers looking to go down an electric route in line with their Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) timetables. Some transitions are easier than others, while some need careful thought and detailed planning to make them happen.”