A contract for conversion of a fleet of bin lorries from diesel to electric power has been signed by Buckinghamshire County Council.
The first Buckinghamshire bin lorry to become fully electric will begin its up-cycling and electrification process as part of a partnership between the local authority and Silverstone-based company Lunaz.
The 26-tonne refuse vehicle will be converted from its existing diesel power to electric, with delivery to be made in the autumn. The work is being funded with a grant from Defra (Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs).
All Lunaz vehicles are completely stripped down and all components inspected and up-cycled or replaced as required. This includes the removal of the current diesel engine and replacing it with a fully electric drivetrain. The cab, driver functions and bin-lift equipment will also be fully refurbished and upgraded to latest technological and safety standards.
This week, Gareth Williams, the council’s cabinet member for climate change and environment oversaw the delivery of the first diesel refuse vehicle to the team at the Lunaz HQ on the Silverstone Technology Park.
He said: “This is a very exciting moment for Buckinghamshire Council and a big milestone in our journey to cutting our carbon emissions and meeting our climate change strategy ambitions.”
“It marks the first step in our desire to run a more sustainable fleet of vehicles by using a renewable energy source and has multiple additional benefits including improving air quality and saving money both in terms of cheaper everyday running costs, and the retention of more than 80% of the embedded carbon versus scrapping an existing vehicle and replacing with new. In this regard, our partnership with Lunaz represents the best possible outcome for both the planet and the taxpayer. It also reflects our commitment as a council, to supporting local business and employment in the area.”
This announcement follows the signing in April 2023 of a seven-year fleet electrification programme between the waste management company Biffa and Lunaz confirming a commitment to allocating a significant proportion of its 1,110 vehicle per year production capacity.