Saving green

The Postal Service is expanding an effort that helps reduce utility costs and greenhouse gas emissions at USPS facilities.

The Utility Management System (UMS) captures cost and use data for electricity, natural gas, water, sewer, steam and fuel oil at facilities.

For instance, UMS data shows the organization’s energy consumption for heating, lighting and other utilities was $588 million in the previous fiscal year.

Since 2008, the organization has used the program to process invoices for approximately 6,000 facilities. To meet the Postal Service’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 25 percent by 2030, UMS will add 300 facilities this year and 3,000 facilities next year.

Information gathered through the system has helped manage energy consumption, prioritize energy infrastructure investments and improve pricing for utility contracts.

Facilities that meet certain eligibility criteria will be contacted by the office of Environmental Affairs and Corporate Sustainability to be included in the UMS.

For additional information, email the UMS team.

Hear this

A tip from a retail associate in Texas has resulted in a shipping deal worth more than $92,000 for the Postal Service.

Camron Brown, who works at the Preston Royal Post Office, talked with a representative of a company who was looking for cost-effective shipping.

He submitted a lead through Clerks Care, a program that allows retail associates, call center agents, and machine and distribution clerks to pass along sales tips.

A sales representative followed up with the customer and closed a shipping deal worth $92,105 in new estimated annualized revenue for the Postal Service.

Sales generated from Clerks Care leads are included in the USPS Every Lead Counts campaign to raise revenue through sales leads from employees.

“Retail associates are the people customers talk to when they come into Post Offices for information or help. It is important to listen to what they are saying,” said Lou DeRienzo, a small-business senior specialist at USPS headquarters in Washington, DC. “Camron listened to his customer, and now that customer is shipping with USPS.”

The Postal Service is encouraging as many employees as possible to submit at least one lead through any of its six lead programs by Sept. 30.

The Small Business and Lead Generation Programs Blue page has more information about Clerks Care and the other employee lead programs: Business Connect, Customer Connect, Mail Handlers, Rural Reach and Submit a Lead.

Sun safety

The Postal Service wants you to know about ultraviolet radiation, which is emitted naturally by the sun, as well as through artificial sources, such as tanning beds and certain types of lighting.

This form of radiation, also known as UV radiation, has some benefits — such as providing vitamin D — but it also poses many health risks.

Invisible UV rays can damage anyone’s skin in 15 minutes, causing sunburn, skin aging, eye damage and skin cancer, the most common cancer in the United States.

To reduce your risk:

Apply sunscreen regularly, even on cloudy or cool days.

Seek shade under an umbrella, tree or shelter for relief.

Wear clothing to cover skin exposed to sun, including long-sleeve shirts and long pants, hats with brims all the way around, and sunglasses.

Limit your time in the sun, especially between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., when the sun’s rays are more intense.

Sunscreens use a sun protection factor (SPF) number that indicates their effectiveness for blocking UV rays. Higher numbers offer more protection. Everyone should use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher.

Read sunscreen labels for proper application instructions and apply sunscreen liberally to all uncovered skin.

Reapply at least every two hours and use more often if you are swimming or sweating. No sunscreen is completely waterproof or blocks all UV radiation, so reapply and take other precautions, such as wearing protective clothing.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Food and Drug Administration and USPS Wellnes LiteBlue page websites have more information on sun safety.