On 18 September, Green Postal Day, 15 international postal companies reflected on the progress achieved by the postal sector in reducing CO2 emissions. Since 2008 the participating postal companies have collectively brought down their CO2 emissions by 31%. Dutch PostNL wants to deliver all parcels and letters in the Benelux region emission free in the last mile by 2030.
For many years already, reducing CO2 emissions has been an important goal at PostNL. PostNL’s climate approach has led to over 50% reduction in CO2 emissions since 2008. This reduction has been achieved through various initiatives, including taking a critical look at efficiency and not driving unnecessary mileage. By working well together throughout the chain as well as bundling deliveries (so that postmen and women can pick up and deliver everything in one route) fewer kilometers are driven, leading to lower emissions.
PostNL’s new parcel sorting centres also make an important contribution in reducing the carbon footprint. These new parcel sorting centres are the most sustainable company buildings in the Netherlands. For example, PostNL generates 43% of the electricity for its parcel sorting centres sustainably via solar panels. All future buildings and depots will be CO2 neutral or even climate positive.
Renewable energy and fleet electrification
In its logistics processes, PostNL always looks for the most efficient route in order to limit the number of kilometers driven. Where possible, renewable energy is used and last-mile delivery is gradually being made electric through the use of e-bikes and e-cargo bikes. In 2020, PostNL started replacing all 1.000 petrol scooters with around 600 professional electric three-wheel scooters. PostNL expects to have replaced all petrol scooters with the electric three-wheel scooters by mid 2021.
The coronavirus crisis has generated unprecedented growth in e-commerce globally. International postal companies have proven their importance, and are doing everything they can to deliver goods and online orders on time. But with this growth comes social responsibility. By working sector-wide on common targets, companies strengthen their contribution to the fight against climate change.
PostNL works closely with postal companies worldwide to join forces and exchange best practices. In 2008, postal companies were one of the first industries to launch a sector-wide program to reduce and measure CO2 emissions through the Environmental Measurement and Monitoring System (EMMS), with the expansion of the Sustainability Monitoring and Management System (SMMS) since 2019.