University’s growing fleet of electric vehicles helps keep city’s air clean

Swansea University’s growing “zero emissions” fleet of twelve electric vehicles is improving air quality, saving money, and reducing carbon emissions, which have already been cut by 14 tonnes.

The vehicles – cars, vans and people-carriers – are used by different branches of the University, such as Information Services and Systems, Catering services, the University mailroom, the College of Engineering, the student letting service (SAS), and the SPECIFIC project.

All the vehicles in the fleet were recently lined up together at the Great Hall on the University’s new Bay Campus.

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More pictures of the zero emissions fleet on display

Between them the twelve vehicles have:

•    Covered 62,560 miles so far
•    Saved 14 tonnes of carbon, compared to the emissions that would be produced by petrol or diesel vehicles
•    Saved over £8,000 in fuel costs

The team are now planning to introduce extra charge points for the vehicles.

Nigel Morris from the information services and systems team at Swansea University said:

“The new fleet has been a triple win: improving air quality, cutting our carbon emissions by 14 metric tons already, and saving the University over £8,000 in fuel bills. 

Poor air quality is a growing concern in cities around the world.  These vehicles are zero emissions, so they don’t produce the gases that are generated by diesel engines in particular.  Imagine the Fabian Way/Mumbles road corridor at peak times.  By investing in electric vehicles, we’re avoiding adding to the air pollution, helping keep Swansea’s air healthy.   

We’re proud to be playing a leading role in this technology in the Swansea Bay Region and Wales."

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Picture:  One of the new zero-emissions vehicles: pictured are (l-r) Carl Palla of SAS Student Lettings, where manager Steve Daniels was one of the first to commit to using the new vehicles; with Miles Willis of the College of Engineering, and Nigel Morris of Information Services and Systems.

Miles Willis, Project Director of the College of Engineering Bay Campus Team, who has been using one of the electric cars, said:

“They’re very nice to drive and just like normal cars.  It’s useful for going between campuses, especially when I need to carry extras with me.   They charge up in about 90 minutes, so I can leave it charging while I’m in a meeting.

They’ve also been great advertising for Swansea Uni as they’ve attracted a lot of interest.” 

Heidi Smith from the University’s Sustainability Team, explained that the zero emissions fleet is part of the University’s wider commitment to reducing its environmental footprint. 

“The electric vehicle fleet is one of the ways in which we’re showing our commitment to sustainability, but there are other examples too.

Our new engineering quarter at the Bay Campus is powered by solar panels.  We’ve just retained our certificate for our environmental management system – ISO14001.  We’re taking on responsibility for managing Crymlyn Burrows Site of Special Scientific Interest next to the Bay Campus.  And we recently had a very successful “switch-off” evening with staff and student volunteers to remind our staff about saving energy.  It all shows that Swansea University is serious about sustainability.”

Find out more about the University's sustainability work

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