The recently released UPS Corporate Sustainability Report highlights action on a range of subjects such as alternative fuel vehicles, use of renewable fuels and an ambitious tree-planting initiative.
UPS's rolling laboratory of 7,200 alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles reached the 1 billion mile mark in 2016, a full year ahead of the original goal. UPS's long-term commitment to sustainability seeks to transform commercial transportation and logistics, spurring growth in the clean fuels market and powering critical engineering advances.
Since 2012, UPS has planted more than 5 million trees in 46 countries, and is looking to plant another 15 million by the end of 2020.
"We had a big sustainability goal as we set out to make the most of our rolling laboratory by driving 1 billion clean miles in alternative fuel vehicles – that's the equivalent of well over 4,000 trips to the moon," says David Abney, chairman and CEO of UPS. "While attaining this goal is new, our commitment to seeking out alternative fuels actually dates back to the 1930s when UPS tested electric vehicles."
UPS deepened its commitment to alternative fuels in 2012, when it set the goal of reaching 1 billion miles driven with alternative fuels by the end of 2017. Shattering that goal one year early, about 12 percent of the conventional diesel and gasoline fuel previously used by UPS's ground fleet is now being replaced by alternative fuels including renewable natural gas and renewable diesel.
Alternative vehicles are just a part of UPS's sustainability efforts. Among the other notable highlights in the company's 14th annual Corporate Sustainability Report:
1. Offering sustainable shipping options. Both consumers and business customers can improve the environmental impact of shipping in several ways. For example, with the UPS carbon neutral shipping option, shippers can offset the carbon impact on the transportation of any shipment. And, with UPS Smart Pickup® service, shippers receive a UPS pickup only when a package needed, saving unnecessary daily trips and the associated emissions.
For consumers, UPS My Choice® service lets members adjust deliveries to another time or location, while the 24,000-plus UPS Access PointTM network provides centralized pickup and drop-off locations. These solutions improve customer convenience, while reducing unnecessary miles and emissions.
2. Using more renewable fuels. UPS plans to purchase up to an additional 60 million gallons of renewable diesel and natural gas over the next several years to expand its alternative fuel fleet. In 2015, the company added another 1,750 new, advanced technology vehicles to the fleet to further reduce its carbon footprint, bringing the total number of vehicles in this specialized fleet to more than 7,200. These investments helped UPS achieve a 14.5 percent reduction in carbon intensity in 2015, progressing toward a gold of 20 percent by 2020.
3. Planting 15 million trees by Dec. 31, 2020. Since 2012, The UPS Foundation and its partners have planted more than 5 million trees in 46 countries, advancing toward a goal to plant another 15 million by the end of 2020.
For a more detailed look at how UPS is making to driving more sustainable business practices in its own operations – and for customers – visit ups.com/sustainability. Watch the UPS Rolling Laboratory fleet in action here, and see how UPS is helping their customers create more sustainable supply chains with this downloadable infographic.