An Interview with Neil Thomas, Carmarthenshire County Council

Neil Thomas

Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Neil Thomas works at Carmarthenshire County Council. He explains how was the integration of electric vehicles in the CCC’s car fleet.

What are the main benefits for a local authority from the integration of electric vehicles in their fleet?

Tangible benefits are that a large group of employees have experienced a glimpse of this alternative technology, whilst witnessing and proving within their day-by-day workings that they are practical and can be successfully incorporated as part of a pool car scheme in a semi urban/rural area.

What are the main barriers for local authorities to acquire electric vehicles?

Distance restrictions by current battery technology and the current Charging infrastructure, that has a direct effect on Range Anxiety. Another barrier is the upfront cost to purchase electric vehicles and would the local authority get back on its investment.

What is Carmarthenshire County Council’s most valuable lesson from introducing electric vehicles in your car fleet?

Make sure you have a very well organised and publicised policy of using electric vehicles in place for the prospective users.
Education and Familiarity to potential users are the keys to making sure that negative views on electric vehicles are negated early.
Also having a decent and organised booking facility, parking set up and recharging facilities in place.


Berlin, the capital of Germany, is a metropolis with 3.3 million inhabitants. The city is transforming continuously and provides a breeding ground for research and innovation. A dense public transport network, low car ownership and an established car sharing landscape with more than 3,500 vehicles are the ideal starting point for new mobility concepts.

Austrian municipalities

In contrast to the global trend, car sharing in Austria remained static for the last 15 years. The introduction of electric mobility on the one hand and the entry of new market players on the other hand have reactivated the sector.


Vigo is a big city situated in the province of Pontevedra, in the north-west coast of Spain. As a harbour city, Vigo plays a strategic role for the regional tourism and its solid transport infrastructure makes it a transport hub for the Galician region and the north of the neighboring country Portugal.

Valencia - Palma

The metropolitan area of Valencia, with 1.7 million inhabitants, is the 3rd largest urban agglomeration in Spain. In the last few years, the region has made substantial investments to improve its transportation system with a commitment to promoting the use of sustainable modes of transport.


Milan, located in the North of Italy, is the second largest Italian city and the capital of Lombardy region. The city covers an area of 182 km2 and has 1.35 million inhabitants. It will host EXPO 2015 and is expecting around 20 million visitors in a year; it is therefore planning a strengthening of its transport service system and has already introduced a Pollution Charge paid by car users entering in the city centre (the so called Area C). The Milan eBRIDGE pilot has been focused on the e-car sharing fleet located into the Area C.


Lisbon is the capital city of Portugal, with a resident population of 547,773 inhabitants. The city is situated on the right bank of River Tagus, in the heart of the country, being its political and major economic centre, presenting a cosmopolitan dynamic as a result of the hundreds of daily movements registered by its floating and resident population.


Carmarthenshire is one of 22 Welsh administrative divisions (Counties). It is the third largest Welsh County by area, and the fourth largest by population (183,800 inhabitants).