Westminster City Council and Veolia have unveiled an ambitious plan for the full-scale rollout of the UK’s largest electric refuse collection fleet
With a £20 million investment, Westminster Council aims to replace its entire 80-strong truck fleet with zero-emission vehicles, leading the way in decarbonisation among UK local authorities.
The 45 new zero-emission trucks will be introduced gradually over the coming weeks. A specially designed depot at Landmann Way, near Bermondsey, will accommodate many of the electric vehicles, ensuring convenient charging through an adjacent energy recovery facility that utilises collected waste from homes and businesses in Westminster.
Operated by Veolia, Westminster’s fleet completes 50 million collections annually, and each electric vehicle saves up to 89% CO2e compared to diesel-powered counterparts, says the council. The collaboration between Veolia and Westminster worked to procure, design, and operate the new depot and charging infrastructure, capable of simultaneously charging 54 vehicles. Smart charging technology will enable the partnership to maximise local resources, support the National Grid by receiving power at non-peak times, and enhance grid resilience.
The electric trucks, built by Dennis Eagle Ltd in Warwick, will form the backbone of the zero-emission refuse fleet, complemented by an additional 90 electric street cleaning vehicles, including e-bikes and e-sweepers.
To charge the e-fleet, the South East London Combined Heat and Power facility (SELCHP) will provide 3.3GWh of electricity annually through a private wire. SELCHP utilises residual waste to generate 265GWh of electricity. Over 50% of the electricity generated by SELCHP qualifies as renewable under the Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin (REGO) scheme.