Delivering cleaner vehicles and better air quality: Educational roadshow returns to Scotland

The “Innovation Wagon” at a previous OWL Roadshow.

An initiative with a brief to help drive up safety and compliance standards in the transport sector (including in relation to air quality and emissions from vehicles) is returning to Scotland in March.

The OWL (Optimised Waste & Logistics) Roadshow is offering “a thought-provoking programme” that the organisers say delivers practical solutions for the air quality crisis, as well as new intelligence about electric RCVs in an interactive workshop. It returns to Mar Hall and Spa in Bishopston outside Glasgow on 26 March, 2020.

The OWL initiative is run by fleet management and telematics firm CMS Supatrak.

This year’s conference and exhibition offers a “curriculum that provides fleet and waste operators with the opportunity to keep abreast of the latest technological developments and best practice in the industry.”

Speakers will be tackling subjects that include road transport air pollution, managing commercial electric HGV fleets, as well as the cost-benefits of eRCVs.

Jason Airey, MD of CMS SupaTrak commented: “OWL Scotland will provide employers in the waste industry with powerful tools to protect their workers from toxic air pollution. The British Safety Council states that employees in our sector are even more at risk because they are walking in the fumes of multiple vehicles all day. OWL Scotland will deliver practical solutions and advice for transport and fleet managers so they can fulfil their duty of care for their staff.”

Barry Sheerman, Labour MP for Huddersfield, and Chairman of the OWL Partnership will open the conference with a keynote talk that will address apprenticeships and urge everyone to join the fight for cleaner air.

Also new in this year’s programme are case studies. For OWL Scotland, Fraser Crichton, Corporate Fleet Manager for Dundee City Council, will talk about how the city managed to go completely electric.

Crichton commented: “Dundee’s journey to e-mobility transition took over eight years, during which we implemented our EV-charging infrastructure along with other renewable energy solutions. Another aspect, we are very proud of is that we came to have the most significant percentage of electric taxis in the UK.”

Electric uptake in waste
With the environmental crisis rapidly moving up the public and political agenda, the issue of commercial electric RCVs is topical. Russell Markstein from NRG Fleet Services and Electra Commercial Vehicles will be updating delegates about how the refuse collection EV concept has grown in popularity, and is soon to be adopted by major cities in the UK including the City of London. Russell will also talk about the recent uptake of Electra Commercial Vehicles in other sectors than waste, including highways, winter maintenance and refrigerated EVs.

After the networking lunch and exhibition, attendees can attend the afternoon programme on Electric Refuse Collection vehicles.

The session after lunch is kicked off by Consultancy Eunomia which recently released the report Ditching Diesel – A Cost-Benefit Analysis of Electric Refuse Collection Vehicles. This paper investigated the relative costs and environmental advantages of introducing electric Refuse Collection Vehicles as a replacement for the standard diesel option.

OWL says its researchers found that, as the cost differential between diesel and electric RCVs is now marginal, there is a strong case for introducing eRCVs more widely.

The e-RCV seminar is “entirely interactive”, and Dennis Eagle’s Andy Graves will discuss the new Dennis E-Collect refuse collection vehicle. At the same time, CMS SupaTrak’s Jason Airey will be providing practical advice on how to eliminate duty-cycle anxiety by correctly using telematics. These sessions will be followed by an expert panel debate which will discuss fleet electrification and the move towards cleaner air.

The experts want to hear the participants’ worries and concerns on the subjects. OWL’s organiser, CMS SupaTrak, believes that these sessions will become a medium for OWL attendees to determine how integrated technology will develop.

As always, the OWL events include a supplier exhibition where delegates can find out about new technology, services and related equipment, as well as a vehicle in-action zone.

Richard Taylor, Sales & Marketing Director for Dennis Eagle commented: “Dennis Eagle supports the OWL Partnership because we want to provide a one-stop-shop for our customers so we can remove any potential headaches for them. To achieve this, we need to co-operate seamlessly with all other companies involved in building world-class RCVs. We work only with carefully vetted suppliers that are also committed to delivering the best possible quality.”

“At the same time, we feel that we have a duty as an OEM to bring the most useful information to our industry to aid clients in making the most informed decisions for their operations. The OWL events deliver thought-leading content as well as providing the ultimate platform for us to establish and grow relationships with fleet managers in the public and private sector.”

To see the full programme for OWL Scotland click here.

There is no charge to attend OWL for qualified visitors or professionals that specify and procure fleet in local authorities, private sector and contracting organisations. There is a charge for non-qualified visitors [£95.00] to attend for the day.

To register for OWL Scotland, go to or click here. Further OWL Roadshows will take place across the UK and Ireland throughout 2020. Interested parties can find the dates and registration links on