Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Benefits of reducing your vehicle emissions

Benefits of reducing your vehicle emissions

Limiting your vehicle emissions can help you to reduce your environmental impact and benefit your business.

Emissions from vehicle exhausts are a significant source of air pollutants including:

  • CO2
  • carbon monoxide
  • fine dust particles
  • nitrogen oxides
  • unburnt hydrocarbons

There are also emissions of particles from tyre and brake wear from your vehicles.

Vehicle emissions result in outdoors air pollution and even higher levels of air pollution inside the emitting vehicles.

You should try to limit the amount of vehicle emissions that your business produces as they may:

  • lead to ill health, such as respiratory problems, among your staff and the public
  • cause a nuisance to your neighbours
  • contribute to roadside levels of pollution in urban centres
  • contribute to climate change

You can also reduce your transport costs, such as fuel bills and vehicle tax, by choosing vehicles that are more environmentally friendly and using them more efficiently.

Financial savings

By using vehicles more efficiently you can make significant financial savings through reduced fuel costs and less wear and tear which could help save money by using employees' time more efficiently and by finding new uses for land previously used for parking.

The Energy Saving Trust suggests that a business with a car and van fleet of 100 vehicles could save up to £90,000 a year by implementing green fleet policies. 

Investing in vehicles that are more environmentally friendly may also make you eligible for enhanced capital allowances and other tax breaks. See the page in this guideline on Taxes, tax breaks and grants for low-emission vehicles

Improved business' image

Reducing your environmental impact can help to demonstrate corporate social responsibility and improve the image of your business.

Awareness of environmental issues is growing, and customers, investors and other stakeholders increasingly prefer to deal with businesses that have good environmental credentials. Having environmental policies and procedures in place is likely to be viewed positively and can also help you win contracts when you tender for business.

Employee benefits

Educating your employees about the environmental impacts of transport and encouraging them to walk, cycle or use public transport for commuting and business travel can benefit their health and finances. It may also contribute to reduced sickness absence, increased staff retention and improved local air quality.

A workplace travel plan can be a cost-effective way for you to put these policies in place.

ChooseAnotherWay.com: How to create a workplace travel plan

Training your employees to drive safely and efficiently and to maintain vehicles can help reduce vehicle emissions and the number of work-related road incidents. Employees also benefit from a cleaner and safer environment and save money if they drive carefully outside of work. See the page in this guideline on Using work vehicles efficiently.

Business continuity

Fuel-efficient driving may also enable you to continue with your normal operations if there are temporary disruptions in the fuel supply.

Cabinet Office: Business continuity management for fuel shortages

Further Information

GOV.UK: CO2 emissions and fuel costs of new and used cars

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