UPS (NYSE: UPS) today released its 13th annual Sustainability Report, highlighting its growing investment in alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles and commitment to log 20 million hours of volunteer time by the end of 2020.
With its “Rolling Laboratory” approach, UPS accelerated its investment in an alternative fuel and advanced technology fleet of more than 5,000 vehicles last year, increasing the number of vehicles by 61 percent over 2013 and adding 1,100 natural gas vehicles. According to the report, UPS logged 154 million miles in 2014 toward its goal of driving 1 billion miles with the fleet by the end of 2017 – an almost threefold increase from 2013.
“It took 13 years to drive the first 350 million miles with our alternative fuel and advanced technology fleet,” said Rhonda Clark, UPS chief sustainability officer and vice president of environmental affairs. “In just one year we were able to build dramatically on that number and we are now more than halfway to our 2017 goal. With continued investments in this fleet, we are doing our part to help transform the transportation industry.”
UPS reported that 5.4 percent – or 25 million gallons – of its total gas and diesel purchased in 2014 was displaced with alternative fuels including natural gas, propane, ethanol, biomethane, renewable diesel, and electricity. The commitment to alternative fuel and advanced technologies will allow UPS to reduce its annual use of gasoline and diesel 12 percent by the end of 2017.
The report also highlights two global trends facing the transportation and logistics industry: an increase in consumer e-commerce and growth in urbanization. E-commerce shipments are typically business-to-consumer (B2C) and fewer packages per stop, compared to business-to-business (B2B) deliveries. This means carriers may be driving more miles and using more fuel to deliver fewer goods.