Government’s green plan for white van man

The Department for Transport is offering free advice to van drivers and fleet managers to help cut fuel bills while reducing their environmental impact.

DfT estimates suggest that an overall improvement in fuel efficiency of just 5% would save around £250m per year and cut carbon emissions by 750,000 tonnes.

The Van Best Practice programme was launched by Transport Minister Paul Clark this week and will be managed by climate change consultants AEA.

The announcement was accompanied by the release of new research into the behaviour of van drivers that demonstrates the need for guidance.

Over half (52%) have not considered ways of reducing fuel costs in the last twelve months and just 7% plan journeys based on fuel efficiency.

Transport Minister Paul Clark said: “Vans are vital to the economy and therefore vital to our efforts to encourage low carbon transportation.

“This programme will help reduce emissions as well as well as assisting users to save money by reducing costs.

“For the automotive industry, indeed for all of us, finding ways to cut vehicle emissions is not an optional extra, it is an absolute necessity.

“With initiatives like this which blend the right amount of innovation and determination, I am confident we will succeed in creating a greener and cleaner industry fit to meet the environmental challenges we face.”

The scheme has the backing of a number of trade associations representing the freight sector as well as a number of major companies heavily reliant on van use.

The initial advice comes in the forms of two guides, one outlining the benefits of improved efficiency and the other offering practical step by step tips on how to actually deliver the theory.

Both can be downloaded from the Van Best Practice website

Sam Bond

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