A new electric waste collection truck trial is underway in South Australia thanks to a joint-council waste contract between City of Adelaide, City of Port Adelaide Enfield, City of Charles Sturt and City of Marion and Cleanaway.

The trial will investigate how feasible the electric vehicle is under actual operating conditions whilst maintaining a consistent and reliable service. The trial will help the councils determine how they might transition to electric waste collection trucks in Adelaide, as the technology matures.

City of Port Adelaide Enfield Mayor, Claire Boan, said the City of Port Adelaide Enfield was excited to partner with Cleanaway and the Cities of Adelaide, Charles Sturt and Marion on the trial.

“It’s another great collaboration between councils and industry for positive sustainability outcomes and reducing our carbon footprint,” Ms Boan said.

The truck used for the trial is a modified 2018 Dennis Eagle truck, with side loader.

It is expected to run for 120kms on active duty before needing to recharge. The truck will be charged overnight for approximately ten hours and will take place at Cleanaway’s depot in Port Adelaide. Its actual driving range will depend on the terrain, number of stops and driving style. 

As well as charging from a powerpoint, the truck captures energy from braking and stores it in a battery to power the electric motor.

City of Adelaide Lord Mayor, Sandy Verschoor, said, “The trial of a new electric waste truck is a fantastic initiative, and it is an example of how councils can work together to address climate change and improve sustainability across metropolitan Adelaide.”

Benefits of the trial include:

  • The truck emits zero greenhouse gas emissions from the tailpipe under actual operating conditions
  • The vehicle is quiet. If the trial is successful it will significantly reduce noise, making early morning or late-night collections possible, which could help ease street congestion
  • Since the South Australia electricity grid now has over 50 per cent renewable electricity supply, and is heading towards 100 per cent, the switch to electric vehicles is a key component of a low-carbon future.

Conan Hookings, Cleanaway General Manager Solids Waste Services, SA/TAS, said, “In South Australia we have 150 vehicles on the road each day servicing homes and businesses all over the state. 

“We have an obligation to keep finding ways to reduce the impact of our operations on the environment and the community, which is how we work towards Our Mission of ‘Making a sustainable future possible’. 

“While electric vehicles reduce our carbon footprint and noise levels on the road, our focus remains on delivering a safe, consistent and reliable service to our customers.”


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