This week, the EA released their report – Environment Agency: reaching net-zero by 2030, in which they focus on tackling their carbon footprint, which is currently 273,000 tonnes per year, a figure they are working hard to decrease by 45% by 2030.
While more than half their 273,000 tonnes of emissions, 148,000 tonnes come from construction, 31,000 tonnes come from their fleet (manufacture and delivery), 26,000 tonnes from other indirect emissions such as waste and water supply and treatment, 23,000 other direct emissions such as their buildings, business travel and laboratories, 17,000 tonnes from their pumping activity to alleviate flooding and drought, 15,000 tonnes are be attributed to their data, digital tools and technology, (manufacture and operation) and 13,000 tonnes come from commuting and homeworking.
Emissions from their cars, vans, boats, four-wheel-drive vehicles, large goods vehicles and plant come from both the manufacturing process and how they are used. They will reduce their current emissions of 31,000 tonnes by 45% to 17,050 tonnes over the next decade. And they will reduce the number of vehicles they use and switch from petrol or diesel to electric or alternative fuels.
The Environment Agency looks after more than 240,000 kilometres of rivers and streams, thousands of flood defences, habitat restoration, and natural projects. Still, they are working hard to minimise the impact their vehicles have on the environment.
By 2030, the EA will reduce the number of their lease cars by 50%, from 4,000 to 2,000, switch to electric vehicles by 2023 and reduce their 1,500-strong commercial vehicle fleet wherever possible. Their two-wheel-drive vans will be electric by 2025, and their four-wheel-drive vehicles will be replaced by ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEVs) by 2030.
Greening the fleet
The EA now have 31 fully electric vans in their fleet, replacing diesel vehicles – and at least another 150 to come by the end of 2022. Switching to these electric vans will save more than 2,300 tonnes of carbon emissions over the vehicles’ lives.
Andrew Rogers, EA Field Team Leader, Worcestershire, said:
“We’re excited about adding electric vans to our fleet. It’s another way we’re playing our part in the net-zero journey – on top of replacing petrol tools with electric ones and looking into solar charging at our depots.”
Sir James Bevan, the Agency’s chief executive, said:
“Reaching net-zero will be one of the biggest challenges the Environment Agency has ever faced. It will require every single one of us to play our part and to think and act differently.
“We will integrate net-zero into every aspect of our work over the coming decade. By learning, sharing best practice and partnering with our suppliers, businesses and communities across the country, we will do everything we can to play our part in becoming a net-zero nation and tackling the climate emergency that we all face.”