Last week, UPS announced the company will commemorate World Environment Day on June 5 by matching the carbon offsets of all packages shipped via its carbon neutral program during the month of June. UPS carbon neutral counterbalances the estimated carbon impact of each shipment by purchasing certified carbon offsets.
“There is truly no better way to honour World Environment Day than to facilitate actions that will help the planet,” said Suzanne Lindsay-Walker, UPS chief sustainability officer (CSO) and vice president of environmental affairs. “UPS hopes to create more awareness about our carbon neutral shipping option so additional customers will take advantage of it, thus helping to fund large-scale carbon reduction programs and reduce the total carbon impact of shipping on the environment.”
To participate, shippers pay a fee as little as the local currency equivalent of USD 0.75 per package, then UPS will match these offsets throughout June. This is essentially doubling the shipper’s impact thereby allowing the shipper to potentially net out “carbon negative” in June. The optional service is available on shipments using UPS Express Plus, Express, Express Saver, Expedited, and Worldwide Express Freight services.
UPS started its carbon neutral program in 2010 and offsets more than 60 million packages annually for customers, which equates to more than 100,000 metric tonnes of carbon offset each year. UPS has supported projects worldwide that include forestation, landfill gas destruction, and wastewater treatment. UPS carbon neutral option is verified by Société Générale de Surveillance (SGS), an inspection, testing, and verification company. Additionally, UPS’s carbon offset process adheres to The CarbonNeutral Protocol from Natural Capital Partners.
Furthermore, customers benefit from the carbon reduction efforts UPS undertakes in its own operations. During the last decade, UPS has invested more than $1 billion on alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles as well as supporting infrastructure. The company is now the largest user of renewable natural gas in the transportation industry and has a specialised alternative fuel and advanced technology fleet of more than 10,300 vehicles. Recently, UPS announced plans to purchase more than 6,000 natural gas trucks through 2022. And, in January, UPS announced an investment in the UK-based technology startup firm Arrival and committed to buy 10,000 of their electric vehicles. UPS is an important part of its customers’ supply chains and continues to offer sustainability solutions that impact their value chains.
The benefits of the carbon neutral program are particularly relevant to companies and organisations in Asia Pacific. In Thailand, for example, UPS works with tapioca starch manufacturer Chol Charoen to capture greenhouse gases emitted from the company’s wastewater and use them to generate electricity and heat. The resulting emissions reductions are equivalent to removing 7,000 cars from the road every year, and shippers contribute to projects like this every time they ship via the carbon neutral program.
“Whether it’s through the introduction of more environmentally friendly packaging, expansion of our network of alternative delivery locations, or the continued involvement of UPS employees in community outreach projects across the region, a holistic approach to sustainability is central to what we do as a company,” said Ross McCullough, President, UPS Asia Pacific Region.
“The results we have seen from our partnership with Chol Charoen in Thailand – as well as from our other global carbon reduction efforts – demonstrate the real value solutions such as the carbon neutral program can add to a company’s goals for sustainable growth and UPS is proud to be able to offer its support.”
UPS will automatically match all offsets during the month of June. To start shipping more sustainably today, please visit your local ups.com website. For more information on UPS’s ongoing sustainability initiatives, visit www.ups.com/sustainability, and stay tuned for the company’s upcoming 18th annual Sustainability Report when it is released on June 30, 2020.