Queensland issued a wake-up call to Australian car manufacturers today when the Premier, Anna Bligh, announced that the state government fleet was about to undergo a major overhaul and public servants would be driving greener, cleaner vehicles.
She said the number of diesel, hybrid, micro, light and small vehicles in the passenger fleet would be increased and the size of the fleet would also be reduced.
“In three years I want emissions for the entire fleet of 14,000 vehicles cut by 15%,” Ms Bligh.
“I want that to grow to 25% in five years and 50% in ten years.
“Based on current annual carbon dioxide emissions for the QFleet fleet this would result in a reduction from 79,300 tonnes per annum to approximately 39,000 tonnes per annum.
“This is the equivalent of taking approximately 8,000 vehicles off the road.
“These are ambitious targets but it is essential if we are to play our part in helping mitigate the impacts of climate change.
“I want to use our buying power to help change attitudes and promote the benefits of more environmentally friendly vehicles.”
Minister for Public Works Robert Schwarten said rather than the current practice of focusing on the number of cylinders, QFleet will apply the Australian Government’s Green Vehicle Guide Greenhouse Ratings to compare the environmental performance of vehicles. He said all passenger vehicles in the QFleet fleet will be required to have a mandatory minimum CVG rating of 5.5
“By introducing these tough new standards the poorest environmental performers will be eliminated,” Mr Schwarten said.
“There will be cases where less fuel efficient vehicles such as 4WD’s will need to remain in the fleet especially in rural Queensland.
“However from January 1 any vehicle that does not meet the CVG standards will have its carbon dioxide emissions offset by participation in a vehicle emissions offsets scheme.
The Premier said she would lead by example and by the end of January would be driving a new ministerial car.
“The Holden Caprice that I currently drive does not meet the proposed minimum rating of 5.5,” she said.
“I have asked that all the options be looked at for more environmentally friendly cars.
“Unfortunately this may mean that I won’t be able to drive an Australian made car but in a small way I hope it will help serve as a wake up call for Aussie car makers.
“The push for more environmentally friendly, fuel efficient cars is inevitable and as demand grows I believe our car manufacturing industry has a unique opportunity to position themselves as world leaders in this field.”