Give HGV operators time to plan for ultra low emission zone reforms

Written by: Jacqueline O’Donovan | Published:

Following Sadiq Khan's announcement that he plans to bring forward the planned September 2020 launch date of Europe's first ultra low emission zone, O'Donovan Waste Disposal MD, Jacqueline O'Donovan, urges the mayor not to accelerate his plans.

I’m disappointed to hear Sadiq Khan’s plans to bring forward the ultra-low emission zone, as it leaves HGV operators with very little time to plan for the reforms.

His clean air revolution will require HGV operators to reduce diesel emissions in all forms across their entire fleets, as well as require them to adopt new clean technologies.

At O’Donovan our operations fully support our overall objective to dramatically improve sustainability, by reducing the carbon impact of construction waste logistics. We have already made significant reductions to idling and reduced carbon impact, and our fleet management system has seen a 50% drop in vehicle idling over a five year period – thereby reducing the company’s carbon footprint by 21.5%. But this does not happen overnight and the wider industry needs time to make further changes and adopt new technologies.

A diesel vehicle scrappage scheme will unfortunately just mean higher costs for the everyday consumer, as they are forced to invest in new, clean technologies which are still expensive in the early days of implementation and adoption – and with the recent announcement from Sadiq, these costs will come about sooner than Londoners have been able to plan for.

I also feel it is unfair to place such a strict time limit on these emission plans when we as a business have invested so much time and resource in recent times addressing a key issue for London’s streets – the safety of vulnerable road users.

The high quality training of our drivers and development and implementation of the latest additions to our fleet is all helping to keep Londoners safer – I would like the mayor to give our industry time to respond to his latest requirements and we will do just that.

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