The City of Ryde in Sydney has introduced two new electric vehicles and accompanying charging stations which will be powered by solar energy, ensuring the new EVs will produce zero emissions.
The new Hyundai electric vehicles – one a Kona Electric and the other an Ioniq – builds on the City of Ryde’s dual efforts to not only reduce its carbon footprint – on its way to a target of becoming net zero emissions by 2050 – but also supports the Council’s pledge under the Cities Power Partnership program to encourage the use of sustainable transport.
The new charging stations installed at the Council’s Operations Centre will be powered by solar energy generated at a Council facility, ensuring that both EVs will produce zero emissions from their use and fuel source, as compared to more than one tonne of carbon emissions per year which would have been generated by fuel-based Council vehicles.
“The devastating impacts caused by climate change have shown that we need authorities at all levels of government to start demonstrating leadership and embrace new technology to reduce carbon emissions,” said City of Ryde mayor, Councillor Jerome Laxale.
“In fact, the Ryde community has told us directly that they want Council to take a leading role on environmental issues – such as reducing carbon emissions – and the purchase of these EVs does exactly that.”
“The City of Ryde will continue to lead the way in implementing policies that will benefit the environment and deliver real action on climate change for the benefit of the local community both today and well into the future.”
“The benefits of EVs include reduced air pollution, removal away from fossil fuel based sources of transport as well as long term benefits such as significantly lower fuel and ongoing maintenance costs,” said Councillor Christopher Gordon, who proposed the electric vehicle project to Council.
“I hope the introduction of EVs to Council’s fleet will convince others to follow suit and make the transition to EVs faster.”
The news comes almost a year after the Council first adopted its Four Year Delivery Program for 2019 to 2023 which committed the City of Ryde to investing $711 million over the next four years as art of its larger Community Strategic Plan.
As reported in May 2019, this would also include $370,000 to begin the transition to zero emissions transport with the purchase of two electric vehicles for the staff transport pool and the installation of three charging stations.
“It’s very much a first step towards the transition,” Councillor Christopher Gordon, speaking to The Driven. “It’s part of the community strategic plan to be a smart and innovative city, to take leadership in those areas.”
The news also follows April’s announcement that the City of Ryde had adopted a target to source all the electricity the Council is responsible for from renewable sources by 2030.
“By committing to a 100 percent renewable energy target, the City of Ryde is continuing its efforts in taking real action to tackle climate change. I would call on other authorities at all levels of government that have not committed to such a target to do so as soon as possible,” said councillor Laxale in April.
“The common refrain that investing in renewables will result in increased costs for ratepayers is easily debunked. It actually delivers energy savings as energy that was once sourced from the grid at a cost is instead sourced for free from renewables, which will result in savings for our ratepayers over the long term.
“To date, the City of Ryde has shown time and again that investment in a cleaner and greener future provides long term economic and environmental benefits for our community,” Laxale continued. “As an example, since 2018 Council has divested more than a third of its investment portfolio away from fossil fuel-aligned institutions, with no worsening of our financial position.”
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