Cleanaway has marked a turning point in the company’s history, as it welcomes the first fully electric collections vehicles to its fleet.
CEO and Managing Director, Vik Bansal said “this is an exciting step forward for our business as we continue to work toward our mission of making a sustainable future possible. With almost 5,000 vehicles on the road each day servicing homes and businesses all over Australia, we are looking for ways to do that more sustainably.”
Despite excitement about the first of a new generation of waste collection vehicles, the ability to deliver a consistent and reliable service remains a core focus.
“It’s important that we continue to deliver a consistent service each day to the households and businesses who rely on us. Sustainability is about more than removing emissions at all costs. If service levels drop or waste collection costs increase significantly for ratepayers – that isn’t sustainable.” Bansal said.
The vehicles are among the first in Australia to be servicing kerbside collections, which means they’ll be under pressure to carry full loads and complete scheduled runs every day. “Cleanaway is optimistic about proving the reliability of the technology” said Paul Young, Cleanaway’s Head of Fleet. “The introduction of these vehicles will encourage fast learning so that the electric vehicles can continue operating once the trial has ended. Once we understand the vehicles, we intend to introduce more electric and combination fuel vehicles to the permanent fleet.”
With zero tailpipe emissions, the vehicles are expected to run for 180-200 kms before needing to recharge. The drive system also generates electricity when braking – topping up the batteries, reducing repair and maintenance costs, and the consumption of other parts like brake pads.
The vehicles will also significantly reduce noise which makes early morning or late-night collections possible for some waste streams, such as green waste, which could reduce the impact for other road users in highly congested areas.
Melbourne Municipal Regional Manager Hugh Cotton said this trial represents the next evolution in residential bin collections in Victoria. “Electric vehicles have the potential for zero greenhouse gas emissions and significant on-road noise reductions, delivering better outcomes to Councils and Residents.”
“If the trial is successful, we would look to introduce this option into local government waste collections wherever possible” said Cotton.
The first vehicle began servicing household collections in Hobsons Bay earlier this month. City of Greater Geelong and Moonee Valley will also host the vehicle during the trial to ensure it is tested across a variety of terrain and in different municipal settings.
Mayor of Hobsons Bay Councillor Jonathon Marsden said the trial of the electric waste vehicle is exciting for Hobsons Bay and will complement the great work already happening in the sustainable transport realm.
“Council is a proud leader in supporting low emissions vehicles,” said Cr Marsden.
“We were part of a hydrogen fuel cell electric car trial with Toyota and now join this trial of an electric waste collection vehicle with Cleanaway.
“These initiatives support our key priorities in the Hobsons Bay 2030 Community Vision of exploring sustainable practices and growth through innovation, technology, job creation and education. It’s also a step in the right direction of Council’s draft Waste and Litter Management Strategy 2025 to trial alternative fuels in the waste, recycling and litter collection fleet.”
These vehicles are not yet in mass production but were commissioned by Cleanaway in conjunction with SEA Electric and Superior Pak. The vehicles were assembled in Bundaberg, with the first arriving in Melbourne earlier this month for commissioning, training and testing before their first runs.
Melissa McColl, Communications and Engagement Manager, 0466 323 844
Cleanaway Waste Management Ltd is Australia’s leading waste management company, operating a national network of unique collection, processing, treatment and landfill assets from over 260 locations across Australia. Our philosophy is that all waste is a resource and we aim to incorporate recover, recycling and reuse throughout our operations and those of our clients. Our mission is to make a sustainable future possible for all our stakeholders.