There is a steady march, of late, to make environmentally friendly moves wherever possible – this applies to all businesses, all operations, and even our private lives. At James Hart (Chorley) Limited, we can tell you that haulage and logistics is the lifeblood of any functioning society – so it stands to reason that any move towards efficiency will affect the haulage industry.
One such prominent move is the concept of electric trucks.
What are the benefits?
Electric trucks have many benefits to offer their diesel counterparts. It’s important to note that, for the time being at least, electric trucks are generally going to be geared more to local deliveries. The reason for this is that battery technology isn’t quite at the point to allow the range or recharge time to be competitive with diesel. This is bound to improve in time, however.
But in terms of local deliveries, what can electric trucks offer? The first is, of course, the lack of direct emissions from the vehicle. It’s important to consider the way electricity is generated before you consider a vehicle truly “green”, however it’s undeniable that electric trucks would dramatically improve the air quality and reduce the noise pollution of crowded city centres.
Operators should also bear in mind that electric trucks should be comparatively easier to maintain, because they’re a much simpler design than conventional trucks. The lack of an internal combustion engine and complicated gearbox means ongoing maintenance should be cheaper and much more time-effective. Renault, Mercedes-Benz, Volvo, MAN, DAF, and of course Tesla, are all known to have electric trucks in development – and some in operation.
Ensuring ongoing compliance
The use of electric trucks in the future may not be one of choice, if legislative direction is anything to go by. A host of major cities both in the UK and Europe are proposing to be diesel-free in upcoming years in the hope of improving air quality. In London, for example, there is already a move towards this with the ULEZ charge – which any hauliers or delivery truck operators who work in London will be familiar with.
More schemes like this are likely to be implemented in the future, where a truck’s age, condition, and emissions will all incur a fine, depending on how old and polluting it is. Electric trucks may be able to travel free, or for a much-reduced rate, through low-emission zones – offsetting the investment required to buy/lease them.