Two new electric vehicle charge points, with a total of four sockets, have been installed at North Herts Council's Letchworth office - enabling it to achieve a five-star rating for running its fleet of vehicles in an efficient and green way.

Currently the council has two plug-in electric hybrid cars considered ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEVs) which are used by environmental enforcement officers. It also has a number of diesel vehicles which will be phased out in favour of electric.

Herts Careline, which is based at North Herts Council, currently has one fully electric van and three more on order for their engineers who travel across the county.

The council commissioned TRL (Transport Research Laboratory), an independent world-leading transport consultancy. It runs the ECO Stars Fleet Recognition Scheme which helps operators reduce their fuel consumption, leading to fewer vehicle emissions and has the added benefit of saving money – and the council has been awarded the highest five-star rating!

Councillor Steve Jarvis, executive member for environment, said: “We’re glad to receive the best possible rating for running our fleet of vehicles in an environmentally friendly way.

"We have had the two hybrid electric cars for a couple of years now, and officers have been sharing two older charge points, situated within the multi-story car park, with Careline.

"The new chargers – which triples the number of points to six – means we can start accommodating more electric vehicles, including those being leased by Careline, and continue reducing the council’s carbon emissions even more."

The council declared a climate emergency in May 2019 and reviewed its Climate Change Strategy in line with the latest research last year. Key targets are to achieve carbon neutrality for the council's own operations by 2030, and achieve a net zero carbon district by 2040.