The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) announced today a series a set of new 2023 sustainability targets, encompassing goals to reduce emissions across the value chain and circular economy commitments to reduce waste and increase recyclability.
According to the USPS, the new goals align with the organization’s ten-year financial sustainability and service excellence plan, Delivering for America. Launched in 2021, the plan targets a reduction in $5 billion in operating costs with initiatives including reductions in the USPS’ regional and local network transportation by aggregating in fewer facilities, moving mail regionally and using less air travel, in addition to measures to insource operations, consolidate operations, modernize facilities, among others. The USPS said that each of these initiatives will enable significant reductions in carbon emissions.
Postmaster General and Chief Executive Officer Louis DeJoy said:
“As we transform our operating processes and invest in new automation, new technologies, and upgraded facilities and vehicles, we will generate significant efficiencies that reduce our costs, minimize waste across all functions of our operations and slash our carbon footprint.”
The USPS’ new 2030 emissions targets include reducing Scope 1 and 2 emissions, including from fuel and electricity by 40%, and Scope 3 value chain emissions by 20%. Initiatives to reach these goals include moving freight from air to ground transportation, optimizing delivery routes for trucks and carriers, and procuring reduced-emission and zero-emission vehicles.
New circular economy goals include diverting 75% of waste from landfills, increasing recycled content of packaging to 74%, increasing package recyclability to 88%, and increasing renewable energy use to 10%.
The USPS also pledged to increase environmental awareness across the organization, with initiatives to educate its 640,000 employees, local communities and federal, state and local partners on its progress, ensure that environmental policy requirements are incorporated into operations, and provide training tools aligned with policy and regulatory requirements to all relevant employees.
USPS Senior Director of Environmental Affairs and Corporate Sustainability Jennifer Beiro-Réveillé said:
“Our customers and partners expect the Postal Service to be efficient and environmentally responsible and I’m proud that our leadership team has developed meaningful sustainability goals and aligned them with our operational efficiency, service improvement and revenue growth initiatives,” she said. “These new targets help advance our commitment to being the greenest way for customers to mail and ship across the country.”