We are currently experiencing network problems with the desktop version of Police Oracle. We hope to have these resolved as soon as possible.

Police Scotland tackled over progress on low carbon fleet

Police Scotland has been challenged over the number of zero emissions vehicles on its fleet.

Less than a fifth of police vehicles are zero emission, according to the Scottish Conservatives.

Just 11% of the force’s fleet don’t have combustion engines – and partner agencies are doing just as badly.

The Scottish Conservatives asked seven organisations for the number of zero-emissions vehicles they had.

While 42.5% of NatureScot’s vehicles are zero emissions, the research found that just 4% of vehicles at Forestry and Land Scotland fall into this category.

The Scottish government has pledged to ban the sale of combustion engine vehicles by 2030 but its opponents said action needed to be stepped up.

Scottish Conservative MSP Maurice Golden said: “These government-funded organisations should be setting the example, but instead they are still relying on the very vehicles they tell everyone else not to drive.”

 “Public bodies should be setting an example when it comes to switching to sustainable cars – and 17% is nowhere near good enough.

“It’s deeply concerning, and clearly they are receiving insufficient funding from the Scottish government to upgrade their fleets.”

It’s not an easy problem to solve. There are critical issues: the range of electric vehicles is limited, the cost of their purchase is high and there is also the cost of charging point installation.

And manufacturers have been slow to adapt vehicles for the Blue Light market.

Exiting current fleet contracts will incur penalties so the answer has been a gradual shift. The force has already begun to modernise its fleet and has been assessing vehicles as part of work to meet a pledge to have an ultra low emission fleet by 2030.

And there are some initiatives under way.

Electric motorcycles were transported across the country for use by officers during the UN COP26 environmental summit but the force’s riders have since returned to their daily fleet.

The force was allocated £10m last year for the latest phase of an upgrade project.

In October 2020 Police Scotland announced it has awarded two contracts worth more than £25m to help achieve its aim to be the first emergency service in the UK with a fleet of Ultra-Low Emission Vehicles.

A contract for 180 Hyundai Kona cars has been agreed and a deal with BP Chargemaster has begun to install 400 charging points at 50 police sites.

The first charging points were fitted on roads that were a priority for the COP26 summit.

A Transport Scotland spokesman said: “We’ve set out an ambition to decarbonise public sector vehicles in stages – starting with cars and new light commercial vehicles by 2025, and all new vehicles by 2030, applying flexibility and pragmatism for front line, specialist and emergency service vehicles where required.”

He added £60m has been put in place to make progress: “The funding has provided support and financial assistance to enable the procurement of over 3,450 zero- and ultra-low emission vehicles as well as charging and refuelling infrastructure.

“We also provide fleet decarbonisation reports, to assist in development of fleet decarbonisation strategies, as well as other tools and resources to help the public sector plan for and deliver against fleet decarbonisation targets.”

Leave a Comment
View Comments 2
In Other News
Police Scotland has purchased 599 electric vehicles to date
Scottish Conservatives condemn continued use of 'unsafe' police cars
Police Scotland off-loads its worst building to meet efficiency target
Detectives moved back into uniform roles to bolster response teams
Mustang adds to tally of electric patrol car choices
Forces battle for Tesla test
Police Scotland given £10m to procure new electric car fleet
More News