North Yorkshire County Council Solar Powered Motorway Depots

North Yorkshire road maintenance is getting greener with the installation of environmentally friendly power supplies at two County Council road depots.

Off-grid power units harness wind and solar power to store energy that will be used to power certain lights and charge tools overnight, ready for use by staff the next day.

The innovation has been carried out by NYHighways, the county’s wholly-owned highway maintenance company, at the Boroughbridge and Selby depots, and there are plans to roll out the installation to other depots.

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County Council Executive Member for Climate Change, Cllr Greg White, said: “We have set ourselves the ambitious goal of becoming zero carbon as a local authority by as close to 2030 as possible.

Officials during the installation of the Boroughbrige solar panels Photo: NYCC

“Initiatives like this are an important step towards that goal and I’m delighted to see NYHighways putting sustainability at the heart of its operations.

“Across all city departments, we are looking for ways to reduce our carbon emissions and energy consumption.

“For example, we replaced 50,400 streetlights with LED technology, reducing carbon emissions by 3,000 tonnes, while achieving energy and maintenance savings.”

NYHighways Managing Director, Ross Bullerwell, said: “NY Highways made the decision at its inception to no longer use fossil fuel powered power tools and equipment, so we have moved to a range of battery powered.

“Off-grid energy sources continue this transition, allowing us to harness natural energy sources to recharge batteries.

“This approach also reduces our dependence on electricity on the grid.”

The off-grid power solutions were installed by contractor Rennicks.

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