How vehicle tracking technology can be used to reduce CO2 emissions

by Mike Hemming, UK Catalytix Director, Masternaut

Managing a fleet of commercial vehicles is a juggling act. Driver welfare, fuel economy, customer satisfaction, asset utilisation, vehicle maintenance...

Fleet managers face a multitude of important issues every day. However, with the London Ultra Low Emission Zones (ULEZ) coming into effect next month, and many more Clean Air Zones (CAZ) coming, one of the biggest problems facing fleet managers today, is the impact of their vehicles on the environment.

Monitoring your CO2 emissions is the first step to reducing your environmental impact. It is critical to have an understanding of your CO2 outputs before you can start making positive changes within your fleet. Thousands of organisations are looking to vehicle tracking technology to support them in collecting this data.

To recognise fleet managers who are committed to this issue, Masternaut has released a free CO2 certification scheme for all customers that is verified by the Energy Saving Trust. Telematics technology is used to measure mileage and CO2 emissions accurately from each vehicle. Rewards are then allocated to each customer based on either:

  • Improvement year-over-year
  • Better emissions than the benchmark across all Masternaut fleets (by fleet makeup)

Telematics devices such as Masternaut’s in-cab coaching device can also be employed to make drivers more aware of any wasteful activity on the road, such as over-revving, harsh braking and unnecessary idling.

Companies, such as GRAHAM, are a great example of how vehicle tracking technology can be used to combat rising emissions and demonstrate a commitment to a greener world.

Within the first four months of monitoring driving behaviour, GRAHAM Construction was able to reduce fuel waste by 11%. Business Manager Karl Teggarty spoke about the impact this has had on GRAHAM’s fuel usage, saying: “We believe 6% of this was down to quick wins such as eradicating unwarranted idling and encouraging drivers to make more efficient route choices.”

A 2018 study on the impact of immediate feedback on driving behaviour demonstrated a significant reduction in idling between drivers receiving instant feedback, versus those who received no feedback.

Naturally, fuel usage is directly linked to the route that a vehicle takes during a working day. By using vehicle tracking technology in conjunction with live traffic feeds to select shorter or more efficient routes, fleet managers can reduce the time drivers spend and/or idle between stops. This not only reduces fuel consumption but also carries with it the added benefit of better customer satisfaction.

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