Denbighshire County Council has become one of the first local authority fleets in the UK to trial high-blend biodiesel on its vehicles. The 25% mix, currently used by a sample of Peugeot 206, Partner, Expert and Boxer vans operating out of the council’s Bodelwyddan depot, are returning strong fuel economy, reducing fuel costs and, most importantly, the environmental impact of the council.
For almost a decade now, Peugeot’s revolutionary HDi engine has remained unique in its ability to operate on up to 30% biodiesel, without modification. Customers can benefit from cheaper fuel (currently two pence per litre cheaper than standard diesel); cleaner, greener vehicles with reduced carbon monoxide and oxide sulphate emissions; coupled with fewer tailpipe particulates.
Denbighshire County Council has been trialling biodiesel in its range of Peugeot vans since last summer. “We are still in the comparatively early stages of our trials and are set to continue them,” explains Chris Brown, Assistant Fleet Manager at the council. “Our staff are very receptive to the trial, they appreciate helping the environment without having to change their normal driving routine.
“Our nine vehicles are running very smoothly, the fuel economy return compares well against published manufacturer averages, and the fuel is costing us less to purchase. These results, coupled with the highly publicised benefits of using biodiesel on the environment and the positive reaction of our staff, add up to an attractive proposition for our fleet.”
Steve Harris, Peugeot’s Fleet and Leasing Director, predicts that more fleets will follow the lead of Denbighshire County Council, “The focus for many fleet operators now is on the environmental impact of the cars and vans they run. Biodiesel makes a positive contribution towards protecting the environment, and those companies currently running Peugeot diesels can make this switch without incurring any additional costs, as long as they can get access to a fuel supply.”
Commenting on refuelling the vehicles, Chris said, “Our Bodelwyddan depot has its own biodiesel supply and all the vehicles in the trial operate out of here, so we don’t have an issue refuelling them. By participating in this trial we are reafferming our responsibility to find a viable alternative to fossil fuels and ensure our future sustainability. We are very pleased with the results so far and would urge more fleets with the ability to use ‘bunkered fuel’ to consider the switch.”