Expensive trash trucks

RCVs are refuse collection vehicles.

Cambridge councils roll out electric RCV
The Greater Cambridge Shared Waste Service – a partnership between South Cambridgeshire district and Cambridge city councils – has rolled out its first electric refuse collection vehicle (RCV). The fully electric Dennis Eagle ‘eCollect’ costs around £400,000, which the partnership says is more than the approximate £185,000 cost of a diesel bin lorry.

400/185 = 2.2x

The first of everything is likely to be expensive. And batteries are expensive. It will be interesting to see how prices change with more production.

Also you wonder how “electric” it is. Automated bin dumpers? AI to find and pick them up?

What is the expected lifetime and the fueling and maintenance costs?
What is the can pickup rate compared to the previous ones?
How often are they out of service?
Are they quieter or just as obnoxiously loud?

Lots of questions and we probably need at least a few dozen of these to operate for a few years to get all the answers.


This article from 2020 has more information:

ODS trials new electric refuse collection vehicle in Oxford

  • One Euro6 diesel engine refuse collection vehicle (RCV) generates 27 tonnes of CO2 per annum. It has an expected life of 10 years, meaning each diesel vehicle will be producing 270 tonnes of C02 over its lifetime.
  • One electric RCV will save approximately £10,000 per annum in fuel and £6,000 per annum in maintenance costs compared to a diesel RCV because it has far fewer parts to maintain.

£16K x 10 = £160K savings

Price differential: £400K - £185K = £215K

Cost of saving 270tCO2 = £55K

Cost per tonne = £204 = $240

Carbon credits in Europe are about 90; California is about $30/tonne


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Vancouver is getting one of the first electric firetrucks in the world
Vancouver Fire Rescue Services has placed an order for the Rosenbauer RT, an electric firetruck. It’s expected to arrive in late 2022, says Deputy Chief Tyler Moore, and after firefighters are trained on it locals should see it on the streets in 2023…

A new diesel truck right now would cost the department around $1.2 million Canadian. The Rosenbauer RT will cost $1.2 million USD

The 30% increase is cost is smaller than the increase for UK trash trucks