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Falkirk Council added eight new electric cars to its transport fleet last month (January) in a bid to reduce emissions and make savings.

The Kia Souls have been leased for three years through the Scottish Government’s Switched on Fleet programme. The programme aims to help public sector organisations increase their green credentials by accessing a £2.5m fund to add electric vehicles to their fleets. The electric cars have zero CO2 emissions and cost around 2p per mile to run compared with 10p per mile for a petrol equivalent.

The new cars bolster the Council’s electric vehicle fleet, which now comprises 28 cars and vans available to staff to use when visiting other locations and attending meetings.

Councillor Paul Garner, spokesperson for the Environment, said: “We have a commitment to reduce harmful CO2 emissions as well as reduce expenditure wherever possible. By leasing the electric vehicles we not only make a significant difference in improving our environment we are also helping to reduce costs.”

The electric cars will supplement a number of low emission petrol cars within the Council’s pool car fleet and are part of the ‘Smart Working Smart Travel’ initiative to reduce employee mileage claims and make significant savings.

Pat Taggart, Fleet Manager, said: “The Switched on Fleet programme provides an affordable way for Councils to lease electric vehicles, which would otherwise be too expensive to purchase outright. By leasing these cars, it provides us with a way to supplement our fleet in an affordable manner while improving our green credentials.”