Electric RCV Trial

Local Gov't • Sunderland

Sunderland City Council are currently undergoing a 24-month trial for the city's first electric Refuse Collection Vehicle (RCV) to help lower CO2 emissions from the transportation of waste.

  • Dennis E-RCV.
  • Dennis E-RCV.

Sunderland City Council's story

Sunderland City Council commenced a 24-month trial for the city's first electric Refuse Collection Vehicle (RCV) in June 2021 to help lower CO2 emissions from the transportation of waste.

The Dennis Eagle eCollect has joined Sunderland City Council's growing EV fleet that is helping to reduce carbon emissions, keep the air cleaner, and be more cost-effective and efficient for council-tax payers.

It is understood to be the first of its kind in the North East region.

As it begins its rounds with two loaders and a driver, the Dennis will be collecting approximately 20 tonnes of waste daily and is expected to clock up 10,000 miles every year.

The vehicle has cost £423,000 - including a contribution of £120,000 from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The trial will be comparing the Dennis eRCV against that of an identical conventional diesel one to look at how they perform against each other.

It is anticipated that lower running costs in relation to fuel and maintenance can be offset against the initial purchase cost. The council will be able to monitor how it performs in 'real life' activities and over an extended period of time as opposed to a shorter-term 'test drive'.

Useful learnings from Sunderland City Council

It is important to be able to carry out a realistic evaluation and to ensure that the vehicle is working in the same environment and under the same conditions as other refuse collection vehicles. This cannot be achieved if you only have a 'demonstrator' for a matter of days.

Sunderland City Council's metrics

Battery life of vehicles.
Charging times of vehicles.
Amount of carbon emissions savings.

Feeling inspired? Discover more about this story...

Positive Impacts

Clean Air Less Waste



Response to climate crisis

Mitigation & Adaptation




Local Gov't, 250 to 10,000 people

Shared by

North East and Yorkshire Net Zero Hub

Updated Feb, 2024

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