With a quiet woosh, today (21 March) we officially launched three new electric tipper trucks for the Central Interceptor project at a work site in Mangere —the first of their kind in New Zealand.
The distinctive navy-blue branded vehicles were unveiled by distinguished broadcaster, Neil Waka— presenter of Te Ao Tapatahi at Whakaata Māori in front of guests that included Iwi, Central Interceptor contractors and suppliers as well as construction industry leaders. The E-trucks can each transport up to 13 tonnes of material, with an average range of 200km. They are powered by a single battery and charging takes 90 minutes, or the batteries can be swapped in around 10 minutes. The trucks produce 79% less CO2 emissions compared with their diesel counterparts.
The 14.7km Central Interceptor wastewater tunnel will improve the health of central Auckland waterways by significantly reducing wet-weather overflows. Since January 2023, the E-trucks have been transporting excavated material from tunnel and shaft sites to Puketutu Island, where we are carrying out a rehabilitation project at a former quarry.
We introduced electric vehicles to their passenger fleet in 2019. Central Interceptor executive programme director Shayne Cunis says the e-trucks make up an exciting addition to the project’s overall sustainability strategy: “This is a stand-out project in terms of safety, expertise and benefiting the environment.
The E-trucks will not only provide huge carbon savings through zero emissions, but residents living alongside some of our 16 construction sites will benefit hugely from having almost silent truck movements. Being a good neighbour is very important to us.”
The E-trucks were manufactured by XCMG, a leading global E-truck manufacturer in China. After extensive testing in Auckland, the trucks were sent to Rotorua where a truck trailer manufacturer designed and installed the tipper bodies. The trucks have a tare of 13,400kg (unloaded). Swapping the 180kg battery takes between five and 10 minutes.
The Central Interceptor project is being delivered by Ghella Abergeldie JV (GAJV) and they received $500,000 in co-funding from the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) under the Government's new-look Low Emission Transport Fund (LETF). GAJV Social Responsibility Manager, Sandra Edward has helped to drive the project from its inception: “Getting the trucks here has been a long process. The global pandemic certainly got in the way, but we’re thrilled they’re finally here and on the road!
“We’re very excited by some of the specific design features such as reversing cameras and bin cameras, as well as an automatic tarp cover that slides over the top of the material for the journey to the tip site.”
Over the next four years, the trucks are projected to transport 66,000 tonnes of spoil and reduce at least 306 tonnes of CO2-e (the equivalent of driving from Cape Reinga to Bluff more than 800 times). For every 100,000km travelled, around 50,000 litres of diesel will be saved.
The eye-catching branding was designed in consultation with our Mana Whenua Kaitiaki Managers Forum and includes graphics of ancient shells and a stingray, after a tooth and other three- to four-million-year-old artefacts were discovered during early site excavation. Each truck has a QR code, which leads to our website and more information about the Central Interceptor project and the E-trucks themselves.
The E-trucks made an appearance at the National Field Days in November 2022. The Central Interceptor team hope to share the learnings of the e-tipper truck experience throughout the construction industry.
Check out the videos for more information: