The Devon Wildlife Trust safeguards Devon’s unique natural environment. Devon is the third largest county in England and the Trust has 60 nature reserves, requiring a lot of vehicle movements. The Trust is very concerned about the effects of carbon emissions on climate change. In the context of the Devon Climate Emergency, and with Prof Iain Stewart as president, the Trust aims to get to zero emissions by 2030. This month the Trust announced a target to plant a quarter of a million trees across Devon by 2025 and is campaigning to prevent peat land disappearing because they are carbon-storing habitats and crucial to tackling climate change.

Aiming for zero emissions the Trust is also focused on reducing its carbon footprint and to evaluate performance on a continual basis. The first steps were to reduce travel between offices, more video conferencing and the introduction of flex desks. Reducing maintenance vehicle movement between nature reserves is harder to do. Recently the Trust started actively monitoring real time fleet emissions of all its vehicles running around Devon.

Devon Wildlife Trust maintenance vehicle with trailer
Devon Wildlife Trust maintenance vehicle with trailer

Fleet emission monitoring is achieved through the EMTEC telematics (connected vehicle) solution. Together with the National Physical Laboratory, EMTEC has developed software to track accurate vehicle emissions in real time and the information is made available through an online dashboard.

National Physical Laboratory (NPL)
National Physical Laboratory

From the dashboard the Trust can see how cars are performing and compare real time CO2 emission metrics against DVLA emission metrics and government emission targets. This helps with overall accounting and improving on targets. Stuart Hodgkiss, Facilities Team Leader of the Devon Wildlife Trust says

“We found out that the carbon emission output from different car models in our fleet varies greatly, depending on engine type, age, conditions and vehicle use. DVLA and government metrics do not cut it because they are based on averages and numbers from manufacturers. We have looked at different telematics solutions and EMTEC is the only provider with realistic data that has been verified by the National Physical Laboratory”.

EMTEC real time fleet emissions view from online dashboard

“As a charity we not only want to be completely transparent in terms of our goals and performance, we also want to use this data in an actionable way by adapting vehicle use and phasing out and replacing the worst offenders first. In fact, we recommend everyone to start monitoring their emissions. Not only because it is good for the environment, but also because less emissions means less fuel and less taxes. A sustainable future is cheaper and essentially this type of monitoring is free because it pays for itself!

We think this is not only useful to non-profits, it is also extremely useful for businesses who want to improve on carbon emissions and reduce costs.

We will ask our contacts and suppliers to do the same because the truth is that we do not operate in isolation. Going net zero is a global initiative.”

Devon Wildlife Trust Electric Vehicle
New EV used by the Trust

“EMTEC is critical to providing telematics and accurate emission metrics to create weekly reports and plot vehicle journeys.

Before we were using averages derived from standard GovUK and DVLA metrics in a spreadsheet. However, now that we are taking real time emissions readings, we can see that the averages underestimate true emissions, often by 20% or more.

EMTEC’s dashboard and reporting is outstanding, and we were very impressed by the non-invasive fitting of the devices. Our fleet went from no monitoring to full monitoring in days!”