More than 5000 vehicles are now signed up to Glasgow's voluntary ECO stars fleet recognition which aims to reduce their impact on the environment.
The Wise Group was recently presented with the 5000th vehicle ECO Stars award by Glasgow City Council for signing up to ECO Stars - a voluntary scheme encouraging operators to run their fleet more efficiently by helping them to reduce fuel consumption, improve efficiency and reduce emissions.
Glasgow City Council's Land and Environmental Services is managing the scheme for the city as part of the ongoing measures to reduce vehicle emissions, especially nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter to ensure compliance with the National Air Quality Strategy objectives.
Bailie Elaine McDougall, the council's executive member for Transport, Environment and Sustainability, said: "I am absolutely delighted by the success of our ECO Stars scheme since its launch last year. Having surpassed the 5000th vehicle demonstrates the huge commitment of fleet operators in Glasgow to reduce their emissions.
"Glasgow like cities throughout Scotland has tough air quality targets to meet in the next few years and we hope that more operators will join ECO Stars to help us reduce their vehicle's environmental impact on our city.
"This is a very positive scheme and we hope more fleet operators will follow the Wise Group and sign up to help our Dear Green Place have a greener and cleaner future."
Ann Beddoes, ECO Stars Schemes Manager, from Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council, said, "Congratulations to Glasgow on reaching this significant milestone. ECO Stars not only improves local air quality but supports local business and it is very fitting that the 5000th vehicle award has gone to the Wise Group with its track record of helping the local community."
The ECO Stars scheme in Glasgow was officially launched in March 2015 and has now recruited 87 members including two of the largest bus operators in the city - First Group and McGills.
The scheme is free to join and is open to all operators of any fleet size who are based in, or regularly operate in the Glasgow City Council area.
The scheme is designed to raise awareness with both public and private organisations of the important role they can play in helping to improve air quality for the people of Glasgow and enhance their own environmental profile at the same time.
ECO Stars allows the council to engage with transport operatives and work towards an improvement in the overall fleet within the city as part of a set of measures to achieve the National Air Quality Objectives.
The Glasgow scheme is part of more than 200 operators with over 14,000 vehicles located in cities across the UK and Europe including Nottingham, Falkirk, Mid Devon, Rotterdam in the Netherlands, Parma in Italy and South East Sweden.
The Wise Group is a social enterprise with a reputation built over quarter of a century on devising and managing efficient, innovative and flexible ways into work. They are focused on helping people gain new skills and get off benefits, reducing reoffending, regenerating communities, working to eliminate fuel poverty and trying to create a greener society.
Alex Warren, the Head of Sustainability and Community Justice for the Wise Group, said, 'The Wise Group is delighted to be recognised as part of the ECO Stars fleet recognition scheme.
"As an organisation, we deliver a wide range of valuable services to help individuals, communities and organisations reduce their impact on the environment and save money. As this is a key area of our work, it is vital that we ensure that we do all that we can to keep our own environmental impact to an absolute minimum so being part of the ECO Stars scheme is one key aspect to this and plays a part in our wider Environmental Management Systems.
"Not only has this scheme helped us to save money, but it has also allowed us to work with other like-minded organisations to do the same. We would like to extended our sincere thanks to Glasgow City Council and the team at ECO Stars for their support to the Wise Group. We would highly recommend others taking up this support too."
The ECO Stars scheme was originally developed by the South Yorkshire local authorities in 2009.
It recognises the efforts of fleet operators to improve their operational and environmental performance.
It does this by assessing both individual vehicles within a fleet and overall fleet management practices and then giving the fleet an overall rating of between one and five stars.
Member businesses and transport operators receive a free operational efficiency review and 'road map' to outline the measures they can practically take to reduce fuel consumption and save money on fleet operating costs.