According to the company, the move is part of the retailer's efforts to reduce its carbon footprint and promote sustainability in the industry.
“Last year we announced our commitment to electric delivery vehicles, and we are delighted to now have nearly half our fleet powered by the sun. The new electric vehicles have been introduced on selected routes in Cape Town and Gauteng with further rollouts and extensions into KwaZulu- Natal planned to follow as soon as possible.
We have bold sustainability goals and ambitions, which included the goal to have zero nett carbon emissions by 2040 so this investment is a big step towards these goals. On an annual basis these 41 vehicles will have the potential to save over 400,000 kgs of tailpipe carbon emissions. With the exponential growth of our online business, switching to electric delivery vehicles is a smart and sustainable solution that benefits everyone,” confirms Liz Hillock, Woolworths head of online and mobile.
“To power the vans, electricity will be sourced as far as possible from renewable sources by utilising DSV’s extensive solar infrastructure at their Gauteng and Cape Town facilities. Should there be any exception to renewables recharging, DSV and Everlectric will work with an audit firm to procure Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) to offset any indirect grid energy emissions,” explains Hillock.
Greg Saffy, senior director operations, DSV Road Logistics, DSV, comments: “We are thrilled to be a part of this collaboration! Recognising our role in the transport and logistics industry, we have raised our sustainability ambitions and committed to reaching net zero emissions across our operations by 2050. Achieving our sustainability goals cannot be realised alone. That’s why we work with customers and industry partners like Woolworths and Everlectric to develop solutions that benefit both our planet and our business.”
Everlectric CEO Ndia Magadagela adds, "We are very excited to be powering the Woolworths green logistics journey. Last year we spoke of what is possible, this year we are leading the charge in green logistics, with South Africa's first electric vehicle commercial fleet rollout.
Woolworths along with DSV and Everlectric have proven the viability of the solution through the proof of concept that we have run over the last two years on South African roads, under South African conditions. We are excited to now scale these learnings in our commercial solution that not only decarbonises our clients’ fleets, but is operationally excellent and cost-efficient."