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Jackson eyes future with electric plant demonstration

Jackson has hosted a trial of electric plant machinery as part of its commitment to understanding how the company can use electric vehicles.

Plant hire firm Lynch arranged the demonstration of a Wacker Neuson 1.6tn electric excavator and 1.6tn dumper, which recently took place at the Woodford West Viaduct Scheme site in east London.

Jackson Legal & QHSE Director Laura Thomas attended the event to see the plant being put through its paces. She said: “We are committed to reducing our carbon footprint and initiatives such as this one are a step on the road to achieving our vision.”

According to Lynch Director Chris Gill, the electric plant offers an equivalent performance to conventional machines but also provides a number of additional environmental benefits. He said: “They are much quieter to use, so are suitable when working in built up areas, and as they are emission free, they enable companies to positively impact their carbon footprint. The plant is also small enough that at the end of the day they can be put on a trailer and taken to a charging point.”

Embracing EVs

The trial is just one of a number of initiatives that have seen Jackson embrace EVs (electric vehicles).

The Highways division has recently taken delivery of an electric van, which will be based at its Dartford site on the M25. Highways Sector Director Paul Watson said the location, where there are a number of work sites in close vicinity to each other, is ideal for assessing the benefits of EVs.

He added: “We’ll use the van to move tools and people between sites. They will all be local journeys, so we won’t be doing a huge amount of mileage - probably less than 50 miles a day. It’s the right environment to test it and to assess the benefits. Ultimately, we are hoping to cut emissions and running costs at the same time.”

Company cars at Jackson are also getting greener, according to Jackson fleet manager Dave Froggatt, who is working to remove diesel cars from the company car choice list.

“This will be an exciting year for the fleet - there are so many new offerings in the electric and ultra-low emission vehicle market,” Dave said. “I’ve already started to reduce the average CO2 across the company fleet by offering hybrid and electric vehicles in all driver grades, and this is something I’m looking to expand on. The company will start to see savings from a whole life cost perspective, while drivers will also benefit from reduced costs at the pump and savings in benefit in kind tax.”

This time last year the average CO2 emissions on Jackson’s car choice list was 107 g/km. The current average CO2 emissions now stands at 73 g/km.