USPS expects to acquire at least 66,000 battery-electric delivery vehicles (BEVs) as part of its 106,000 vehicle acquisition plan for deliveries between now and 2028.
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What you need to know: This announcement seems to be the latest revision in the mix of new vehicles the Postal Service plans to acquire in order to begin replacing its aging delivery fleet of over 220,000 vehicles.
Earlier this year, USPS said it planned to procure more than 33,800 BEVs, encompassing Next Generation Delivery Vehicles (NGDV) and commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) vehicles.
Today, USPS said it will acquire at least 66,000 BEVs, of which 45,000 are NGDVs and 21,000 COTS, depending on market availability from preferably domestic sources and operational feasibility.
Internal combustion vehicles will still be part of the acquisition mix as is necessary to meet immediate USPS vehicle replacement needs.
Why it matters: USPS said it is keeping with its priority to provide carriers and communities with safer, more efficient vehicles as soon as possible.
Unlike its current fleet, the new vehicles will feature air conditioning and advanced safety technology and are more suited to modern-day operational requirements.
What else is important: The announcement today is enabled by the Postal Service’s overall network modernization efforts allowing for faster deployment of EVs, supported by USPS’s improving financial condition which includes $3 billion in congressional funding appropriated under the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) of 2022.
What they said: “We have a statutory requirement to deliver mail and packages to 163 million addresses six days per week and to cover our costs in doing so – that is our mission,” commented Postmaster General Louis DeJoy.
“As I have said in the past, if we can achieve those objectives in a more environmentally responsible way, we will do so.
“The Postal Service’s vehicle initiative, and I personally, have benefited from the collaborative spirit of John Podesta, Senior Advisor to the President and leader of the Office of Energy Innovation, as well as leaders within the Council on Environmental Quality and the Climate Policy Office.
“These professionals have demonstrated a real appreciation and understanding for how vehicle electrification can be incorporated into the Postal Service’s mission and transformation, while not distracting from it.
“In our own way, we have all been faithful stewards of how IRA funding and Postal funding will be spent.
“The $3 billion provided by Congress has significantly reduced the risk associated with accelerating the implementation of a nationwide infrastructure necessary to electrify our delivery fleet
“While most of the electric vehicle funding will continue to come from Postal Service revenues, we are grateful for the confidence that Congress and the Administration have placed in us to build and acquire what has the potential to become the largest electric vehicle fleet in the nation.
“What is less widely understood is that our network modernization initiative is necessary to enable this vehicle electrification and will also provide meaningful cost and carbon reductions in other ways.
“A key focus of our modernization effort is to reduce inefficient transportation and improve distribution operations, resulting in far less air cargo and far fewer truck trips.
“When combined with our substantial commitment to the electrification of our delivery vehicles, the Postal Service will be at the forefront of our nation’s green initiatives,” DeJoy concluded.
New USPS Vehicles to Start Servicing Postal Routes in 2023
USPS also confirmed it is still on target to have its NGDVs start servicing postal routes in late 2023.
The Postal Service also said it will continue evaluating and procuring vehicles in shorter time periods.
This will enable it to be more responsive to evolving operational strategy, technology improvements, and changing market conditions, including the expected increased availability of BEV options in the future.
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