NHS Shetland has introduced a fleet of new electric vehicles to help its staff get around the isles while also cutting the board’s carbon footprint.
A total of 24 MG4 vehicles have been phased in to replace the former Mazda 2 fleet. This expansion will take the Board’s overall total electric car fleet to 35.
NHS Scotland is aiming to become a net zero health service by 2040, with all vehicles to be net zero emission vehicles by 31 December 2025.
To keep the vehicles on the road, the Board has also installed 22 electric vehicle charging points across NHS locations to ensure the fleet can recharge when required. Funding of £76,000 for the charging point infrastructure came from the Scottish Government fleet decarbonisation programme.
Charging points have been installed in the following locations for use with NHS Shetland vehicles only: Unst Health Centre, Yell Health Centre, Whalsay Health Centre, Brae Health Centre, Bixter Health Centre, Hillswick Health Centre, Levenwick Health Centre, Lerwick Health Centre and Scalloway Hub. In addition, four charging points have been installed at the Montfield Board HQ to support the higher cluster of pool vehicles based in Lerwick.
This is a long way from the Board’s first electric car, the Nissan Leaf, which entered the Community Nursing team’s pooled fleet in Lerwick in 2011.
Since 2016, the Board has been steadily increasing the proportion of its vehicle fleet that runs on electricity. This month marks a significant step towards change as zero emission vehicles now account for 75% of the NHS overall vehicle fleet.
Board Chair Gary Robinson said: “This is an important step for NHS Shetland and it demonstrates our commitment to tackling climate change.
“By replacing almost all our fleet with fully electric vehicles, we are significantly reducing our emissions from our vehicles.”