Fleet expert predicts green vehicle policies will drive recovery

Increasing numbers of companies are saving money by adopting an environmental approach to managing their vehicles, according to Malcolm Noyle, environmental fleet consultant at Cardinus Risk Management.

There's nothing like a financial crisis to focus the mind on the bottom line and vehicle operators are now reducing costs by cutting fuel use, improving the way vehicles are driven, preventing unnecessary mileage and considering their duty of care, said Mr Noyle. As a result, we are starting to see the green shoots of recovery. Companies have started to invest in activities that will demonstrate a clear return on investment.

2009 was an important year for environmental initiatives. The Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) was set up by the government. Headed by Michael Hurwitz, the OLEV is dedicated to the introduction and promotion of low carbon vehicle solutions.

The DTi and the LowCVP invested in the establishment of the Low Carbon Van programme, designed to encourage the use of innovative hybrid, electric and low carbon light commercial vehicles. The government's recent pre-budget report and the Copenhagen climate change summit also gave clear direction for environmental vehicle management and duty of care.

There are many vehicles producing less than 120g of CO2 per km, making choosing a low carbon car even easier than ever. The Mitsubishi i MEiV, a four-seat, four-door electric car that can do over 80mph and has a range of over 160km, goes on sale in 2010.
Mr Noyle said Cardinus Risk Management has invested in a range of products that reduce costs as well as risk and impact on the environment, citing a government agency commission as an example.

Cardinus commissioned an intensive review of a fleet run by a government agency. It reviewed operations, policies, risk and environment, said Mr Noyle. The recommendations made by this review will save significant amounts of money for the agency, reduce risk and improve its carbon emissions. This report and its outcomes are the result of Cardinus adding value for its clients.

Marcus Noble, managing director of Cardinus Fleet, agreed that this is a time of great opportunity. Directors are looking for cost-savings from the fleet operation, he said. By managing mileage, company cars, the 'grey fleet' and drivers effectively, there are significant savings to be made. Risk profiling your drivers and vehicles will reduce your costs and CO2 emissions. Make the case for a professional assessment of your fleet today and you're far more likely to get sign-off.


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