Waste Management today opened New Zealand’s first workshop dedicated to converting diesel trucks into electric vehicles.

We plan to convert 20 of our national truck fleet in the next two  years. The first conversion is almost completed and the truck will be  used to collect waste from Auckland Hospital. In addition, the workshop  is also open to other companies looking to transform their vehicles into  EVs.

Tom Nickels, Waste Management Managing Director, says he is delighted  to open the workshop in what is a major step forward for both the  company and electric vehicles in New Zealand.

“Our investment in the EV workshop will create a knowledge centre for  EV conversion in New Zealand and will help us move towards our long  term goal of a fleet of fully electric vehicles.

“Our conversion partner EMOSS in the Netherlands has provided the  kitsets and knowledge for our team to start completing conversions here  in Auckland. We are also looking forward to helping other New Zealand  businesses convert their fleets for a more sustainable future.”

The Government’s Low Emission Vehicles Contestable Fund, administered  by EECA, contributed $500,000 in 2017 to help build the workshop and  convert the first two trucks as part of its commitment to EV  development.

We announced our move towards a fleet of electric vehicles in September 2016 as part of its sustainability commitment.

Since then we’ve launched the Southern Hemisphere’s first sideloader  electric truck for residential wheelie bin waste collections, which has  started work on Christchurch streets. Another sideloader electric truck  will soon be in operation in Auckland. This is in addition to the  electric box body truck which started work in Auckland in November 2016.  We have also added more than 20 electric cars within its light fleet  during this time.

“Our move towards electric vehicles reflects our place in a circular  economy, where our vehicles can be ‘powered by waste’. Through our  modern, sustainable landfill and energy parks we generate renewable  electricity from the gas we capture from the decomposition of waste that  we collect,” says Nickels.

Up to 95% of gas emissions are captured through this process, putting  enough power back into the national grid to power over 18,000 homes  nationally.

Click here to see some highlights from our launch.