How the USPS Justified Buying 9 Times More Gas Cars Than It Needs

The USPS’ decision to buy mostly gas cars is the exact opposite of what postal services around the world are doing. La Poste in France has a fleet of 40,000 electric vehicles, or about 28 percent of the fleet, including pedal-assist e-bikes. 1,200 of the Belgian Post’s 18,000 vehicles will be electric by the end of the year. Italy’s post office ordered 1,744 EVs. Likewise, Japan ordered 1,200. The list goes on. It is also the opposite of what private delivery carriers in the U.S. like AmazonFedEx, and UPS are doing.

In order to justify this, the USPS conducted an environmental analysis in partnership with the consulting firm AECOM that, in the words of EPA administrator Vicki Arroyo, was “seriously deficient.” (AECOM did not respond to a Motherboard request for comment.) She pointed out several instances of shoddy math and bad assumptions. She also accused the USPS of doing this whole thing in the wrong order; the environmental review was conducted after a contract for the new vehicles had already been awarded, even though federal regulations say the study has to go first for obvious reasons.


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