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03/03/2021

FedEx to phase in electric delivery vehicles

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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A shipping giant is focusing on electric vehicles and sustainable facilities as key components of a plan to achieve carbon neutrality.

As part of its newly launched program to reach global carbon-neutral operations by 2040, FedEx Corp. is designating more than $2 billion of initial investment in three key areas: vehicle electrification, sustainable energy, and carbon sequestration. By 2040, the entire FedEx parcel pickup and delivery (PUD) fleet will be zero-emission electric vehicles. 

To accomplish this goal, FedEx will enact phased programs to replace existing vehicles. By 2025, 50% of FedEx Express global PUD vehicle purchases will be electric, rising to 100% of all purchases by 2030. Amazon, which has emerged as a major shipping rival to FedEx, is also making electric delivery vehicles a critical component of its own effort to achieve carbon neutrality by 2040. 

Other key steps FedEx will take toward reaching the carbon neutral goal include working with customers to offer end-to-end sustainability for their supply chains through carbon-neutral shipping offerings and sustainable packaging solutions, as well as continuing to invest in alternative fuels to reduce aircraft and vehicle emissions.

FedEx will also build on existing “FedEx Fuel Sense” initiatives designed to reduce fuel consumption in its aircraft, as well as continue efforts to make its more than 5,000 facilities worldwide more sustainable through continued investments in efficient facilities, renewable energy, and other energy management programs.

In addition, the company is pledging $100 million to Yale University to help establish the Yale Center for Natural Carbon Capture, accelerating research into methods of carbon sequestration at scale, with an initial focus on helping to offset greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to current airline emissions.

“We have a responsibility to take bold action in addressing climate challenges,” said Frederick W. Smith, chairman and CEO, FedEx Corp. “This goal builds on our longstanding commitment to sustainability throughout our operations, while at the same time investing in long-term, transformational solutions for FedEx and our entire industry.”

“While we’ve made great strides in reducing our environmental impact, we have to do more. The long-term health of our industry is directly linked to the health of the planet, but this effort is about more than the bottom line – it’s the right thing to do,” said Mitch Jackson, chief sustainability officer, FedEx Corp. “At FedEx, we are committed to connecting people and possibilities resourcefully and responsibly. The steps we are taking today will contribute a positive impact for generations to come.”