The fleet recognition scheme “ECO Stars” is expanding with the launches of two more schemes in North Lanarkshire and Dundee – bringing the total number of schemes in the UK to 11 – with almost 300 members and approaching 20,000 vehicles. Both schemes were launched with award presentations to their inaugural members which included Asda, Malcolm Logistics and National Express.
The free scheme encourages fleet operators – of all sizes – to improve efficiency, reduce fuel consumption and emissions – to help improve local transport related air quality.
When joining, members have their vehicles and overall fleet rated by industry experts to assess their current performance – both operational and environmental – and achieve an ECO Stars rating between 1 and 5. A bespoke “road map” is then produced containing tailor-made guidance to help improve the efficiency of their fleet.
ECO Stars began in South Yorkshire in 2009, and has since expanded to ten more areas in the UK including four schemes in Scotland – Edinburgh, Falkirk, Dundee and North Lanarkshire.
North Lanarkshire Council’s Convenor of the Environmental Services Committee, Councillor Helen Mckenna said, “North Lanarkshire has an increasingly high number of commercial vehicles travelling on our roads, and this is having an impact on air quality. We are tackling that in a number of ways through our Air Quality Action Plan, and the ECO Stars scheme is a positive way to help local businesses and improve the local environment.
Vari McDonald, depute convener of Dundee’s environment committee “Signing up to this scheme provides tools and support for operators to reduce costs and their environmental impact, and it also helps in the council’s drive to reduce air pollution.
Dundee and North Lanarkshire Council both obtained funding from the Scottish Government’s Air Quality Action Plan grant to set up ECO Stars as part of their Air Quality Action Plans. ECO Stars is being managed on behalf of the councils by specialist transport consultants, Transport and Travel Research Ltd.
Ann Beddoes from Barnsley Metropolitan Council and national ECO Stars Manager said she was delighted to welcome North Lanarkshire and Dundee into ECO Stars, “Since the original scheme was set up, ECO Stars has grown spectacularly. I would like to encourage other local authorities to consider running the scheme.”
The scheme is free to sign up to. For more information call the ECO Stars Team on 01543 416416, email firstname.lastname@example.org.