Earthcare, the WA company that constructs, rescues and rebuilds urban landscapes, has recently renewed its truck fleet with a view to minimise emissions.
The urban and natural environments of today are inextricably linked. Stormwater catchments discharge into the rivers, weeds and pests from modified landscapes invade bushland, and street trees and parks become the only shelter for local wildlife. This process of urbanisation is familiar and strongly debated amongst policy makers, one company driving change at a grass roots level both at a local and regional scale is Earthcare located in Bibra Lake, Western Australia.
Entrusted by the public and the government to construct, rescue and rebuild the urban landscape, Earthcare operates below the carbon neutral threshold and owns subsidiary companies such as Earthcare Recycling and Earthcare Consulting.
Credited with numerous awards for projects such as the special needs children’s playground at the Perth Zoo, Wellard Village, Faulkner Park and many more, Earthcare’s operation includes community consultation, the sourcing and use of recycled materials, revegetation, public art, landscape construction and maintenance.
Earthcare operates above most environmental standards and does not mind paying a premium for investment in ‘greener’ equipment, according to Earthcare’s owner, Francis Burke.
"Obviously the environment is at the forefront of all policies at Earthcare and we take all aspects into consideration, ranging from the recycling of waste collected from clearing and building works to sourcing the least environmentally damaging materials for our projects and equipment," Mr Burke said.
Earthcare not only applies strict environmental controls on its own operations, but also scrutinises its suppliers.
"We recently decided to expand our fleet with an Isuzu NPR 200 Tradepack because of the truck’s strong environmental credentials," Mr Burke said.
"With the introduction of the DPD (Diesel Particulate Diffuser), the Isuzu NPR 200 is one of the cleanest four tonne vehicles you can buy on the market – it exceeds the latest Australian and European emissions standards in terms of particulate matter".
Mr Burke said the environment was not the only feature that influenced Earthcare’s purchase of Isuzu trucks.
"Earthcare has used different Japanese manufactured trucks in the past and we have found the whole of life costing and maintenance of the Isuzu range much more viable," Mr Burke said.
"We changed our entire truck fleet to Isuzu in 2007, and the trucks’ reliability and performance has been second to none."
Operating on private and government projects in Western Australia, Earthcare’s Isuzu NQR 450, NQR 300 and NPR 200 Tradepack are specified in flatbed applications, whilst the FRR 500 is specified as a long bed tipper.
Earthcare has also noted that the power to weight ratio of the Isuzu trucks as an impressive feature.
"Our trucks usually pull large dual axle trailers as well as carrying bobcats and other equipment and our drivers have found the SiTEC engines to be very efficient and powerful," Mr Burke said.
Due to the nature of our business, our trucks have reasonably high engine hours with low kilometres and do a lot of low speed work on jobs such as verge mulching, planting and so forth".
Currently, Earthcare’s Isuzu trucks drive around 30,000 to 40,000 kilometres a year and are serviced exclusively by Earthcare’s Isuzu dealer. In a bid to further reduce its mechanised equipments’ emissions, Earthcare has undertaken a gas fleet renewal program for its smaller vehicles.