2010 Sustainability Report
Leaner | greener | faster | smarter

Our network | Greener facilities

Waste not, dispose less

The Postal Service paid about $38 million this year to dispose of solid waste. We offset nearly $15 million of those costs through waste prevention efforts and recycling revenue. We’re working hard to reverse those statistics — to earn more through recycling and pay less for disposal.

Becoming leaner and greener requires re-thinking waste in all aspects of our business. We want to visualize throwing away waste as throwing away money, and recycling as a way to earn money.

Our goal is ambitious: to reduce the amount of waste we send to landfills by 50 percent by FY 2015, compared to an FY 2008 baseline. There are two ways to do this: generate less waste and save money or increase recycling and make money. We are committed to both.

But reaching these goals depends on more than our own performance. We are engaging our customers to help us by asking them to discard unwanted mail in Post Office lobby recycling bins instead of our trash cans. This year, our lobby mail recycling program kept 22,000 tons of mail out of landfills and generated more than $1.75 million in recycling revenue.

We’re also asking our suppliers to continue to help by using more sustainable packaging, so we can recycle it instead of adding to our waste stream and landfill costs.