A consortium of five West Yorkshire councils is working with local fleet operators to improve air quality through the launch of a new Eco Stars scheme.

The fleet recognition scheme provides guidance and advice on operational best practice to operators of goods vehicles, buses, coaches and commercial vehicle fleets.

It is being delivered by transport consultancy TRL on behalf of Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds and Wakefield districts.

The first fleet operators to sign up to the West Yorkshire scheme were welcomed to the launch event by councillor Keith Wakefield (pictured), chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority Transport Committee. 

They included three local council fleets, Bradford and Leeds Teaching Hospitals and operators The Co-operative Group, JG Pears and DHL.

Wakefield said at the launch event in Elland Rd, Leeds, this week:  “Our city region is key to the North’s and the nation’s success and West Yorkshire Combined Authority and its partners are committed to unlocking the Leeds City Region’s full economic potential and making it the low-carbon ‘growth engine’ for the North.

He added that the Eco Stars scheme would be a significant factor in helping the region achieve its air quality ambitions, which include a low-emission strategy, a clean air zone for Leeds city centre, and a modernised bus fleet.

Ann Beddoes, Eco Stars schemes manager, from Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council, said: “I am delighted that West Yorkshire have joined the Eco Stars network and wish them every success in their drive to reduce air pollution.

“We hope that West Yorkshire’s fleet operators will take full advantage of this opportunity to make a difference to their local environment while at the same time improving their bottom line.”