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Huntingdonshire District Council (HDC) has teamed up with Cambridgeshire Police and Cambridgeshire Fire to conduct a trial using hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) fuel.

Police and Fire

HVO, sourced from renewable vegetable oils, is fully compatible with standard diesel engines without any adjustments needed. By adopting HVO instead of traditional diesel, the trial aims to achieve up to a 90% reduction in CO2 emissions, significantly advancing the council's goal of achieving Carbon Neutrality by 2040.

A HVO fuelling station has been established at HDC's depot, granting access to Cambridgeshire Police and Cambridgeshire Fire to facilitate the trial with various vehicle types.

Operations Manager for HDC, Andrew Rogan, said: "It is great to see HDC leading and facilitating this HVO trial. Collaborating with other authorities to utilise HVO through sharing our facilities presents a valuable opportunity to significantly reduce CO2 emissions across the district. This trial marks a significant step towards the council's goal of being carbon neutral by 2040."

From Cambridgeshire Constabulary, Sergeant Jamie Williams, said: "I'm delighted to be working with our partners at HDC and Cambridgeshire Fire on this very important project. The environmental advantages have been clearly demonstrated and our participation allows us to contribute to a wider reduction in CO2 emissions produced by the emergency services.

"This fuel alternative allows us to utilise current resources with no impact on our ability to respond to our communities across Cambridgeshire. The project also allows us to strengthen and build upon existing relationships with our local authority and emergency service colleagues."

Assistant Director of Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue, Wayne Swales, said: "We are pleased to be working with Huntingdonshire District Council on trialling hydrotreated vegetable oil fuel in our fire engines. One of our key commitments in our recently launched community risk management plan is to work towards reducing our carbon footprint. This trial, along with a further trial we are doing in the Peterborough area, is really helping with this.

"The crews at Huntingdon have been receptive to using the fuel. Not only has this significantly reduced the emissions generated from standard diesel, but there have also been no issues with performance of the fire engines. We hope to look at further steps following the trial to introduce the fuel to more of our vehicles."

The trial is set to run for a few more weeks, and to date the HVO used by HDC, police and fire service vehicles has already reduced the carbon footprint of the combined services by 72 tonnes of CO2, compared to standard diesel.