Clean Mail

Nearly a year after the USPS announced it would shift a sizable portion of its delivery fleet to electric vehicles, the first signs of this are coming to fruition. A few weeks ago in Atlanta there was a press event that showed chargers in the ground and showed off the new Ford E-Transit EV delivery van. Jennifer Mossalgue at Electrek has more.

The US Postal Service showed off its first EV charging stations, and some spiffy new Ford E-Transit BEVs, at an event in Atlanta yesterday, with hundreds of new sorting and delivery centers set to open around the country this year. It’s all part of the $40 billion plan to upgrade its service while assembling one of the county’s largest EV fleets, with more than 66,000 delivery vehicles in service.

“The work USPS is doing to electrify those vehicles is making EVs commonplace on every road and street in our country, while reducing air pollution and increasing comfort and safety for the dedicated public servants who deliver our mail,” John Podesta, senior advisor to the President for Clean Energy Innovation and Implementation, said in a press release.

The USPS is now working to convert some 400 post office sites into new sorting and delivery centers that will serve as larger hubs to “deploy EVs along local carrier routes.” Rather than the local post offices of yore, these new centers will service larger geographic areas, with the first 14,000 EV chargers manufactured by Siemens, Rexel/ChargePoint, and Blink. So far this year, the service has opened 29 new sorting and delivery centers around the country.


My personal take on this is delivery services using a near-100% EV fleet is a no-brainer. These vehicles travel short distances, are almost never on a highway (which reduces range), and can easily go all day without a topping up of the battery. Rivan and Amazon have proven this is viable with the partnership of electric Amazon vans. Additionally, all the delivery vehicles sit overnight and can slow charge on a Level 2 charger all night.

One side benefit of these vehicles is they're modern. This means UPS workers wouldn't need to add air conditioning to their list of demands for their union. The trucks should not only be clean but offer modern comforts like keeping someone cool when it's 80+ degrees outside. Or even the ability to listen to their own music via bluetooth while driving. The Rivian van does that.

Electrification of how we travel is a major piece of slowing climate change. If the biggest sources of pollution can be eliminated piece by piece with this low-hanging fruit, then it takes little more than putting purchase dollars toward Option B instead of Option A.

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