The LoCITY Conference

The LoCITY Annual Conference, delivered by Commercial GreenFleet, gave freight and commercial vehicle operators working in and out of London the latest on air quality policies and information on lowering vehicle emissions

London’s ultra-low-emission zone (ULEZ) comes into effect next April and will be expanded up to North and South Circular Roads in 2021. These, as well as other tough measures to improve the captial’s air quality, could affect fleets operating in and out of the area, especially for vans and truck operators, where zero-emission vehicles are not as viable as they are for passenger cars.
    
Transport for London’s LoCITY programme has been designed to support freight operators in London prepare for the changes, and on 5 September, Commercial GreenFleet delivered LoCITY’s annual conference at Kempton Park.
    
Hosted by LowCVP’s Andy Eastlake, delegates heard the latest information on national air quality measures, how London is planning to deliver them, and what support is available for commercial fleets.

The national picture

Phil Killingley, deputy head of the government’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) kicked off the presentations, giving information on the government’s Road to Zero objectives, and more specifically, what they intend to do to help freight comply. He said: “What was new about the Road to Zero strategy was the announcement of an interim ambition of 2030, for one in every two cars to be ultra-low-emission, and for 40 per cent of vans to be ULEV.
    
“For HGVs, we did state that our ultimate long term goal is to have zero emission heavy goods vehicles. This might seem like a long way off but there have been some exciting developments; we can see that there is some innovative technology out there to indicate that there is a pathway to that goal. We do however understand that that pathway is not clear as there are a lot of different options.”
    
Transport for London’s Christina Calderato gave an update on the progress the LoCITY programme has made in helping freights and announced the launch of a new website designed to help answer the misconceptions around new fuel technology.
    
Thazi Edwards from UK Power Networks explained the impact of EVs on the electricity network and Natalie Chapman from the Freight Transport Association spoke about the need to consider SMEs operating in and out of London when developing clean air measures.  
    
Glen Davies from the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme gave information on the scheme’s progress and next steps.
    
IKEA’s Marcus Helliwell shared the company’s aim to have a zero emission delivery fleet for London by 2022 while Mark Barrett took a session about how LDV’s electric EV80 can help commercial operations become zero emission.
    
There was also a Q&A and debate panel, chaired by LowCVP’s Andy Eastlake, which included Mike Foster from the Energy & Utilities Alliance and NGV Network and Christina Calderato from Transport for London.

Exhibitors

The LoCITY Conference also included opportunities to test drive the latest cleaner commercial vehicles, as well as chat to the companies supplying the industry.
    
Ford brought its Transit PHEV which has an advanced hybrid system that enables a zero-emission range of 31 miles, and features the multi-award winning Ford EcoBoost 1.0-litre petrol engine as a range extender.
Delegates also got to drive LDV’s EV80 zero-emission van, which has a 120-mile range, as well as its tipper variant.
    
Van and truck manufacturer Iveco, which has sustainability at the core of its products, displayed its electric and gas powered Daily, as well as the Stralis NP.
    
The Mercedes FUSO eCanter, the first 7.5 tonne fully electric truck, was also available. It has a battery capacity of 70 kWh and a range of up to 62 miles.
    
For those looking for range-extended electric trucks, Tevva showcased its range.
    
DAF Trucks had its new XF truck on show, which runs on clean burning HVO (Hydro-treated Vegetable Oil). Those looking for other alterntive fuels could talk to CNG Fuels, the leading operator of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) refuelling infrastructure and provider of compressed biomethane (Bio-CNG), as well as Certas Energy, suppliers of Shell GTL.
    
The Electra full electric refuse collection vehicle was also present, as was a selection of road sweepers and small electric utility trucks.

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