The respectful silence of a funeral cortege is set to get even quieter in the capital as the UK’s largest funeral provider launches it’s very first Tesla electric hearse to serve environmentally-conscious communities in London.
Co-op Funeralcare is introducing the cutting edge Tesla vehicle into its fleet from 1st December. Based out of Co-op Funeralcare’s Manor Park care centre it will be available for funeral services across North and East London including Chingford, Clapton, Dagenham, East Finchley, East Ham, Hackney, Highams Park, Holloway, Hornchurch, Kentish Town, Loughton, Romford, Tottenham, Upminster, Walthamstow and Wanstead.
Co-op Funeralcare will also be adding two Nissan electric hearses to its electric fleet which will be located in Bristol and Edinburgh.
Adapted from the Tesla ‘Model S’ and Nissan ‘Leaf’ passenger vehicle equivalents, the hearses’ exterior structures are made from recycled composite materials further enhancing their sustainability credentials.
Electric vehicle charging points are also set to be a standard feature across all new Co-op Funeralcare care centres that open in 2022 and beyond, meaning all electric hearses will be charged from renewable sources. The new hearses will join the operator’s existing fleet of hybrid ceremonials which launched last year following £4m investment.
The funeral provider has also pledged to plant a tree for every funeral that it carries out across selected funeral homes in Cheshire and Bristol, with a wider rollout likely in 2022. The initiative forms part of a global regeneration and reforestation programme led by the search engine, Ecosia.
Sam Tyrer, Managing Director of Co-op Funeralcare, said: “The way people choose to say goodbye is changing and those who have worked hard to reduce their carbon footprint in life, are also passionate about reducing their impact on the planet when they pass.
“We’re committed to leading the way in helping the bereaved and their loved ones have a final farewell that does not adversely impact the environment. Whilst we are already proud to be a carbon neutral business, it’s imperative that we work to drive down carbon emissions. We are excited to be bringing our fully electric Tesla to London to offer dignified, elegant and environmentally friendly services for families and communities in the area.”
Whilst Co-op Funeralcare has been carbon neutral since 2011 – and all of its electricity comes from renewable sources – the UK’s largest funeral provider also plays a central role in delivering the Co-ops pledge to achieve net zero status by 2040, ten years ahead of the Government’s own ambition.
Co-op’s new ten-point climate, which was unveiled earlier this year, sets out a blueprint for the Group to achieve net zero for its direct and indirect carbon emissions by 2040.
It includes offsetting the greenhouse gas emissions of Co-op products and services, including its food and drink, to achieve carbon neutral status by 2025, price matching Co-op own-brand plant-based foods to meat-based equivalents and creating an innovation fund for carbon reduction research and development initiatives.
All 830 Co-op Funeralcare homes recently took part in the member-owned organisation’s “Co-op 26” campaign in honour of COP26 which took place in Glasgow earlier this month. Co-op customers were invited to take part in a “Count Us In” initiative in which customers and members can pledge to make practical changes every day to help reverse the climate emergency.