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YOUNG AT HEART: Are you monitoring the miles?

Date: 16 June 2009

Tristan Young is Editor-in-chief of BusinessCar

Mileage monitoring is not a new concept, but it's one that fleets rarely do well. Talking to fleet managers, it seems this is not because of a lack of willingness to do so, but because it's difficult and costly - at least in the initial outlay - which is subsequently difficult to get sign-off for.

However, if, as we expect, the Government brings business cars into the remit of the upcoming Carbon Reduction Commitment then big businesses (as for now smaller business escape) will have to lower their CO2 outputs or face financial penalties.

Because cars only produce CO2 when they're being driven, it's mileage and fuel use that will have to be cut. But before you can cut anything you have to know where you started.

So once again it looks like a Government initiative will make the role of the fleet or transport manager even more essential to a business's financial wellbeing.

And if you think mileage reduction will only be a worry for large fleets, you can bet

that once a system is in place they will tighten the terms to include increasing numbers of smaller businesses.

The saving grace for smaller businesses will be that they should be spared the teething pains of a new system, which legal expert Nicola McConville predicts in this week's lead story will be "a nightmare generally".

You have been warned.