2010 Sustainability Report
Leaner | greener | faster | smarter

Our network | Greener facilities

Green building certification

The U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification requires that a facility be constructed or upgraded, and demonstrate continued operation and management, according to a wide range of green building guidelines.

These include eliminating irrigation, reducing energy consumption and waste generation, developing a green purchasing program, using environmentally preferable cleaning supplies, salvaging and reusing materials, using natural lighting and incorporating a mix of innovative environmental features.

The Postal Service’s design standards and criteria for sustainable construction meet and in many cases exceed the requirements for LEED.

Over the past few years, USPS has received LEED green building certifications for several facility expansions. In FY 2010, our Greenville, SC, mail processing facility received LEED Gold certification and the Eagan, MN, mail processing facility received LEED Silver certification.

The Postal Service is now focused on reducing the size and number of its facilities in response to declining mail volumes. However, any new building we construct in the future will conform to LEED guidelines.

HOW GREEN IS OUR ROOF? — ONE YEAR LATER

Green roof in Manhattan

Our green roof in Manhattan.

Our FY 2009 Sustainability report highlighted the green roof installed on the Morgan Processing and Distribution Center in the heart of New York City. The facility also replaced 1,600 windows and deployed other energy-saving enhancements. One year later, the project continues to exceed its targets.

The energy-saving measures were projected to save $30,000 annually in heating and cooling expenses. However, the project has saved more than $1 million in the first year.

The increased savings are attributed to a 40 percent reduction each month in energy use and an average decrease in energy expenses of 15 percent since the project was completed.

Other environmental goals of the green roof, such as reducing the amount of storm water runoff by as much as 70 percent in summer and 40 percent in winter, also are on track. USPS is pursuing LEED and other high-performance and sustainable building certifications for the Morgan facility.