USPS pledges move to all-electric delivery fleet

The Post Office says it is spending nearly $10 billion to electrify its aging delivery fleet.

WASHINGTON — In a bid to boost President Joe Biden’s pledge to remove gas-powered vehicles from a crowded federal fleet, the Postal Service said Tuesday it will drastically increase the number of trucks. electric delivery — and will transition to all-electric for new purchases starting in 2026.

The Post Office says it is spending nearly $10 billion to electrify its aging fleet, including installing modern charging infrastructure at hundreds of postal facilities nationwide and buying at least 66,000 vehicles electric delivery truck in the next 5 years. This spending includes $3 billion in funding approved under the landmark health and climate policy passed by Congress last year.

The White House hailed the announcement as a way to maintain reliable mail service for Americans while modernizing fleets, reducing operating costs, and cleaning the air in neighborhoods around the country. country.

“This is the climate strategy on wheels of Biden and the US Postal Service delivering it to the American people,” said White House climate adviser Ali Zaidi.

John Podesta, senior White House adviser, added: The new plan “puts the postal fleet on the path to electrification, dramatically reduces vehicle mileage in the network, and puts USPS at the forefront of the revolution.” clean transport network”.

The U.S. government operates the largest fleet of vehicles in the world, and the Postal Service is the largest fleet in the federal government with over 220,000 vehicles, one-third of all U.S. vehicles. The USPS announcement “sets the standard for the rest of the federal government and, importantly, the rest of the world,” the White House said.

Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, who was fired because the original plan included buying thousands of gas-powered trucks, said the Postal Service was required by law to deliver mail and packages to 163 million locations. only six days a week and cover expenses. do like that.

“As I’ve said before, if we can achieve those goals in a more environmentally responsible way, we will,” he said in a statement Tuesday.

A plan announced by DeJoy in February would only power 10% of the agency’s next-generation fleet. The Environmental Protection Agency has criticized the Postal Service, an independent agency, for underestimating greenhouse gas emissions and not considering more eco-friendly alternatives.

Environmental groups and more than a dozen states, including California, New York and Illinois, have sued to block the original plan and ask judges to order more environmental scrutiny before the Post Office does. fleet modernization program. The Postal Service then adjusted its plan to ensure that half of the initial purchase of 50,000 next-generation vehicles will be electric.

Katherine García, the Sierra Club’s clean transport campaign manager, called the plan announced Tuesday “a big win for climate and public health” and a sensible decision.

“Instead of being polluted by their daily mail packages,” she said, “communities across the U.S. will be relieved of cleaner air.

Adrian Martinez, senior attorney for Earthjustice, one of the groups that sued, said: “Every neighborhood, every household in America deserves to have an electric USPS truck delivering clean air with their mail. and today’s announcement gets us almost there. Postal Service.

Senator Tom Carper, D-Del., chairman of the Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee, said the Postal Service’s announcement “represents real progress,” but said, “I still not ready to finish this work. We have to keep the pressure on until 100% of the USPS delivery fleet runs on clean energy.”

Senator Gary Peters, D-Mich., chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, said he would “push every part of the postal team to be environmentally friendly. and formed by the union.”

In addition to modern safety devices, the new delivery vehicles are taller, making it easier for postal carriers to pick up larger packages. They have also improved ergonomics and climate control.

https://www.king5.com/article/news/nation-world/postal-service-pledges-all-electric-delivery-fleet/507-c2937360-6071-41a1-8cb0-575a0c9e0c87 USPS pledges move to all-electric delivery fleet

Edmund DeMarche

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