Electric vehicle for Royal Liverpool University Hospital

The van, which is supplied to the Trust under contract with specialist healthcare transport firm ERS Medical, will be used to transport lab and blood samples between the Royal and Broadgreen Hospital - a round trip of 9 miles.

It is the first time that a vehicle, powered entirely by electricity has been used by the NHS in the North West and provides a cheaper, more sustainable alternative to a combustion engine vehicle. The electricity for the van is supplied by the Trust's energy partner Dalkia at a charging point at the Royal. This low carbon electricity is generated by the Hospital's own CHP plant which further lowers the carbon footprint of the van. To meet carbon and cost objectives Dalkia has partnered Royal Liverpool University Hospital since 1995 providing the design, installation, operation and maintenance of plant to provide all the steam, hot water and electricity for the Hospital. This is provided by a 5.3MWe combined heat and power plant supported by boilers and standby generators.

The van can travel up to 100 miles before it needs recharging and has a top speed of 81 miles per hour. The Trust expects the van will travel around 300 miles per week, emitting zero CO2 emissions and at around 3 pence a mile, is far cheaper to run than a petrol or diesel fuelled vehicle.

Andy Johnson, energy manager at the Trust said: "This is a great step forward in supporting better sustainability and carbon reduction in the NHS, as well as helping to improve local air quality. The van is charged using electricity generated onsite and we expect this zero carbon vehicle will be start of a wider initiative."

Mike Hooper, Regional Director at Dalkia said: "This is an excellent initiative and a good way of further enhancing the use of the low carbon electricity generated by the Hospitals CHP power plant. It's a big commitment for Dalkia to help the trust reduce their overall carbon footprint. We look forward to working with the trust going forward."

Launching the van Luciana Berger MP said: "I'm delighted to be launching this vehicle today and I want to congratulate all the staff at the Royal and their partners who have worked hard on this fantastic initiative.

"It's great that during Climate Week the NHS in Liverpool is leading the way in cutting damaging carbon emissions and safeguarding the future of our planet. I hope that this electric van will be the first of many and that more hospitals across the North West follow The Royal's example."

Brendan Fatchett, Managing Director at ERS Medical comments, "Sustainability is high on our agenda for the future. We're always looking for ways to innovate our services to the NHS and this investment is an exciting one for us. We envisage this electric van to be the first of many zero-emissions vehicles to be added to our fleet."