Since 2015, Ambatovy has made an effort to switch out diesel fuelled trucks and busses for environmental vehicles. Ambatovy now has 95 electric busses and trailers, pick-ups and other vehicles in service, which has allowed it to remove over 400 diesel pick-ups from use. For example, Ambatovy uses electric busses for transporting workers and stakeholders around the plant site in Madagascar, rather than having one to four employees use trucks. The benefits of electric transportation are many. The busses are inexpensive to run and maintain, as they do not consume any diesel or lubricants but instead use electricity produced at the plant. They save the company on fuel and maintenance costs. Electric vehicles do not create harmful emissions, and use solar panels to extend their charge. Maintenance is limited to keeping the busses clean, greasing the suspension and checking the battery water levels on a weekly basis. Electric busses are also safer since their speed is limited to 30 km/hour and their large windows ensure a high degree of visibility; drivers can clearly spot nearby pedestrians and other potential road hazards.
This emission-reducing initiative has already yielded a range of cost, safety and environmental benefits for the operations.
At our Fort Site, employees have been using bicycles to get from one area of the plant to another for years. There are approximately 200 bicycles on site at any given time, which are cared for and maintained by the site’s maintenance department. The bikes provide an alternative mode of transport for our employees on site, and employees are able to move efficiently and safely.