USPS Rebuffs EPA Protests, Will Move Forward With New Mail Truck That Gets 8.6 MPG

USPS Rebuffs EPA Protests, Will Move Forward With New Mail Truck That Gets 8.6 MPG

Thanks, but no thanks. That’s the message the United States Postal Service is sending the Environmental Protection Agency and the White House Council on Environmental Quality as they’ve concluded “there is no legal or other basis to delay” the Next Generation Delivery Vehicle (NGDV).

According to the Postal Service, it has completed the required Environmental Policy Act evaluation for the NGDV and determined plans for the vehicle are a “fiscally and environmentally responsible” way to modernize the federal government’s largest and oldest vehicle fleet.

The USPS went on to say the NDGV is a “purpose-built right-hand drive vehicle capable of meeting performance, safety, and ergonomic requirements for efficient carrier deliveries to businesses and curb-line residential mailboxes over the entire nationwide system.” The Postal Service added they’re only committing to electrifying 10% of the NDGV fleet as the electric version of the delivery vehicle has a “significantly higher total cost of ownership than the ICE NGDV.”

Also Read: EPA Protesting New Postal Trucks Over Their Use Of Internal Combustion Engines

The initial order only calls for 5,000 EVs, but the Postal Service contends their “commitment to an electric fleet remains ambitious given the pressing vehicle and safety needs of our aging fleet as well as our fragile financial condition.” Postmaster General Louis DeJoy went onto note they’ll “pursue the acquisition of additional BEVs as additional funding – from either internal or congressional sources – becomes available.”

While the Postal Service acknowledged a fully electric fleet would deliver “greater emission benefits,” they’re effectively arguing they’re doing the best they can with limited resources. They added the NGDV has been years in the making as the search for a Grumman LLV replacement started in 2015 and resulted in a vehicle that features air conditioning, improved ergonomics, increased cargo capacity, and modern safety features such as air bags, automatic braking, and a 360° camera system.

This puts the NGDV lightyears ahead of the Grumman LLV and DeJoy noted, “The men and women of the U.S. Postal Service have waited long enough for safer, cleaner vehicles to fulfill on our universal service obligation to deliver to 161 million addresses in all climates and topographies six days per-week.”

While there’s no arguing that the Grumman LLV needs to be replaced, the Biden Administration has taken issue with the low percentage of electric NGDVs.  Furthermore, ICE-powered NGDVs will only have a 0.4 mpg improvement over the Postal Service’s current fleet and they’ll average a dismal 8.6 mpg with the air conditioner running.

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