In a Regional First, Cambridge Invests in an Electric Bin Lorry. First of Many?

Electric Bin Lorry (Dennis Eagle Ltd)

The Dennis Eagle eCollect

The Greater Cambridge Shared Waste Service - a partnership between South Cambridgeshire District and Cambridge City Councils - has acquired its first electric refuse collection vehicle (RCV).

The fully electric Dennis Eagle eCollect costs £375,000, which is £190,000 more than the usual £185,000 cost of a diesel bin lorry.

However the partnership said this highlights the two councils' commitment to the"growing climate emergency", and the Shared Waste Service says it will eventually replace all current 55 diesel vehicles across its fleet with electric or hydrogen lorries. Altogether these currently use 50,000 litres of diesel oil a month at a cost of about £660,000 a year.

Cllr Rosy Moore, Cambridge City Council Executive Member for Climate Change, added: "The lorry itself it is quite like what we already have. So we know our crews will quickly become familiar with it. As well as electric vehicles, we're also investigating the possibility of testing vehicles that are powered by hydrogen in future too. We're committed to doing what we can to cut our own carbon emissions and decarbonising our waste fleet will be a big step towards this."

The lorry will be "substantially quieter" than existing bin collection vehicles with no fumes or pollution emitted from the engine and no energy wasted by an idling when the vehicle is stationary.

The council plans to instal solar electric panels at their Waterbeach Waste Service Depot. This will contribute to the energy needed to charge the bin lorry's batteries and a typical recharge will take 7 to 8 hours.

Liberal Democrat County Councillor, Nick Hollinghurst, who represents the Tring & Villages Division in Hertfordshire said, "Well done Cambridge, with this ambitious plan to replace diesel with cleaner, quieter electric power for its refuse collection fleet. Yes, capital costs are higher, but maintenance and energy costs are lower, especially with solar power contributions and in-depot overnight charging - plus less noise and cleaner air for residents."

Richard Taylor, Sales and Marketing Director at Dennis Eagle Ltd said: "We're very proud of the eCollect. It's the only fully integrated electric refuse collection vehicle produced by an original equipment manufacturer and we're confident it will make a big impact on waste management in the UK."

Dennis Eagle is a part of Terbergen RosRoca Group (TRRG) and a major part of their business is the production of cabs and chassis for various kinds of specialised vehicles sold by TRRG in Europe. Picture from Dennis Eagle Ltd.