Opinion | Why Electric Mail Trucks Are the Way of the Future

The U.S. Postal Service faces serious challenges, with billions of dollars in annual losses and total mail volume continuing to decline. Meanwhile, Congress is constantly hamstringing the agency.

But now lawmakers have an opportunity to invest in the Postal Service in a way that would pay dividends for years to come: By electrifying the postal fleet.

Tucked inside the massive social spending and climate package lumbering through the Senate is money for new, cleaner postal delivery trucks. There’s a lot to like about electric postal trucks. They’d significantly improve Americans’ health while also slowing climate change. And it just makes sense for taxpayers over the long term; the Postal Service’s private sector competitors have already made similar investments. As Democrats weigh potential areas to cut in President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better plan, this is one provision that should escape the knife.

To call the U.S. Postal Service’s current vehicles “clunkers” would be an understatement. These often decades-old trucks are famous for having no airbags, no air conditioning and a nasty habit of catching fire. So the Postal Service’s recent decision to buy 165,000 replacement trucks is basically a no-brainer. But the main question is whether they will run on electricity or gasoline.


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