As the world becomes more socially and environmentally conscious, impactful ESG policies have become integral to corporate strategies. Stakeholders at every level, be they shareholders, employees, or consumers are demanding more of them, and firms should look to embrace this as a chance to make radical positive change. These increasing public expectations have been accompanied by new legislation, with Parliament looking to drive the UK towards meeting its ambitious net zero targets. In April last year, we became the first G20 country to enshrine in law mandatory climate-related disclosure for over 1,300 of the largest companies and financial institutions.
Though some firms such as Unilever, who’ve reduced their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 68% since 2015, have risen to this challenge, others are yet to seize the opportunity. Claims of greenwashing have become abundant, with firms’ speculative promises of major internal change failing to reflect their distinct lack of credible plans for implementing impactful ESG policies. Most businesses unfortunately operate in a grey area, being neither a large source of detrimental impact nor a significant force for good.
When considering their ESG policies, firms should look to place a greater focus on how staff get to work, not just their activities and behaviour once there. Transport produced 27% of the UK’s total GHG emissions in 2019, and with cars and taxis responsible for 61% of the total road transport vehicles emissions, the importance of encouraging alternative sustainable transport methods should not be understated.
Here e-bikes are of particular importance, every kilometre ridden on an e-bike and not driven saves 256g CO2e. Assuming someone commutes three times a week for the average cycled commuting distance of 16km over a year, the equivalent CO2e saving would be enough to charge 81,000 smartphones or refuel an SUV 23 times. The potential GHG emissions that can be saved by e-bikes is furthered by their innate ability to encourage and enable riders of all abilities to make the transition to sustainable transport.
Not only are they necessary, they’re popular too! Research from HSBC shows that post-lockdown 20% of commuters were more likely to cycle to work and with the e-bike industry booming, it’s clear that cycling to work has never been more popular.
At VOLT we’re pioneering the UK’s transition to alternative sustainable transport by providing consumers and businesses with affordable, technologically innovative e-bikes. Our fleet service is tailored to cater to the needs of every business, whether that’s last-mile delivery, on-site travel, or staff commuting programs. Alongside this, we also provide a maintenance and repairs service with dedicated customer support and the option for custom branding across the fleet.
Our partnership with Deliveroo provided riders with subsidised VOLT e-bikes at a reduced cost, incentivising workers to ditch their fossil fuel vehicles and get on a bicycle. The first of its kind nationwide trail provided significant benefits not only by cutting down on riders’ GHG emissions but also by reducing their noise exposure and increasing their physical activity. Existing riders were satisfied too! The bikes’ batteries enabled them to fulfil more orders over a longer period of time and thus maximise their earnings.
We’ve also worked with a number of NHS trusts, including the Central London Community Healthcare Trust whose staff took advantage of a fleet of new VOLT e-bikes. The trial had widespread staff approval, with over 90% of trialists rating the experience positively, and demonstrated the sizeable positive impact that e-bikes can have on improving staff wellbeing whilst increasing efficiency and reducing pollution.
As we look ahead, VOLT sees further partnerships with businesses as a vital part of the transition towards building a more sustainable transport network. Fleet schemes like ours provide a convenient and eco-friendly alternative to traditional transport, making them a valuable option for businesses seeking to meet their ESG targets. By promoting cycling as an attractive way to get to work, companies can encourage healthier lifestyles, reduce traffic congestion and make cities better places to live.
If you want to learn more about how VOLT can provide sustainable transport solutions to help your business join the mass adoption of sustainable transport, get in touch with our team on 020 7378 4728 or visit our website www.voltbikes.co.uk/volt-fleet.