To help mark Earth Day’s 50th anniversary on April 22, here are five facts about the Postal Service’s efforts to serve as a good steward of the planet.
1. USPS recycles … a lot. Each year, the organization recycles tons of paper, cardboard and plastic. This helps the environment because manufacturing products from recycled material uses less energy than new material. For example, the energy that USPS saved through its plastic recycling in 2019 is the equivalent to removing more than 1,580 cars from the road.
2. The Postal Service uses environmentally friendly products. In 2019, for example, the organization purchased more than $449 million worth of items that have environmentally friendly attributes such as using recycled content and being energy and water efficient. These purchases help prevent pollution and increase U.S. industry competitiveness.
3. USPS employees help reduce the organization’s environmental footprint — literally. For example, about 7,000 letter carriers deliver mail solely on foot. This releases zero greenhouse gas emissions and reduces traffic congestion in cities.
4. The Postal Service helps other government agencies go green. The USPS BlueEarth Federal Recycling Program transports and recycles used electronics for federal agencies, with no shipping or item disposition costs.
5. USPS uses solar panels. The Los Angeles Processing and Distribution Center has approximately 38,000 solar panels that can help reduce carbon dioxide emissions by being a clean and renewable source of energy. The panels are on the facility’s roof and also provide shade for cars in the parking lot. Now that’s cool.