Dundee City Council received funding from the Scottish Government in 2014 to setup an ECO Stars Scheme for taxis and private hire vehicles. The scheme was launched in Dundee on 11 March 2015 with the four inaugural members receiving their certificates at this event. The number of taxi / private hire vehicle companies signed up to be members of the ECO Stars Scheme in Dundee has since risen to 17 with 519 vehicles registered to the scheme.
ECO Stars is a proven intervention to address vehicle emissions and, ultimately, air quality problems that are related to road traffic – specifically targeting commercial vehicles. It has been extended to include taxis and private hire vehicles.
ECO Stars Taxi is a programme which actively engages with operators of taxis and private hire vehicles at a local level with the specific aim of encouraging and helping them to reduce the negative impact of their activities on air quality and the wider the environment. It achieves this by undertaking an individual assessment of operators’ vehicles and their management practices, providing recognition for what they currently do and then support for further efficiency and environmental performance improvements.
At its heart, ECO Stars is a fuel management and operational efficiency support programme, designed to help operators reduce fuel consumption, thereby reducing vehicle carbon and particulate emissions. It also has the added benefit of providing the tools and ongoing support for operators to reduce operating costs which makes the Scheme highly attractive and beneficial to the local economy.
The ECO Stars Scheme involves engaging with and influencing local taxi and private hire vehicle operators, encouraging them to become a Scheme member and then supporting them to improve operational and environmental performance. This is achieved through a variety of ways including marketing outreach, direct liaison and working through the local authority taxi licensing officers.
To date, the Scheme has been delivered through a specialist third party consultancy who have experience of engagement with and working alongside commercial vehicle and taxi operators delivering ECO Stars from its initial inception to its current status, with multiple schemes live and operational in the UK and on Continental Europe.
The scheme gives member operators:
Recognition - through star ratings from 1*- 5* for vehicles and then 1*- 5* for their whole operation – based on the ‘cleanliness’ of their vehicles and the efficiency of their operations
Profile – by highlighting their membership to local and national press, profiling the best practice they demonstrate in fleet composition and management to peers, the industry at large and the local community
Ongoing efficiency support – by developing a bespoke operational efficiency ‘road map’ action plan for each member, focusing on fleet composition, fuel management, driver skills development, vehicle specification/maintenance, use of IT support systems and performance management/monitoring. The aim of the ‘road map’ is to validate what operators currently do and to give them ideas on other actions they could implement to improve operational efficiency and reduce vehicle emissions. Importantly, member operators receive a basic level of support on an on-going basis to implement these measures, staying in touch and developing long-term relationships and interaction by the sharing of best practice.
The scheme is an engagement tool for local authorities to establish positive dialog with the taxi and private hire vehicle sector.
If you are interested in joining the scheme or would like to find out more information then please:
call the ECO Stars Team on Tel: 01543 416 416, or
Email the ECO Stars Team: email@example.com and quote ‘ECO Stars Taxis Dundee’
Tel: 01382 433710 Option 4