Officials announced Thursday that electric power will be available for the first batch of next-generation U.S. postal delivery vehicles.
Officially, the Postal Service placed its $2.98 billion initial order for 50,000 vehicles. At least 10,019 of these vehicles must be battery-electric. This represents a doubled number of electric vehicles compared to the original plan. By the end of next year, the first new vehicles will be available for delivery.
Louis DeJoy, Postmaster General, stated that the Postal Service fulfilled its promise to accelerate purchases electric vehicles on the basis of strategic and financial considerations.
He said that today's order "demonstrates, as have been stated all along, the Postal Service is fully dedicated to the inclusion electric vehicles as part of our delivery fleet". Even though these vehicles are a more expensive investment than internal combustion, he added.
Carolyn Maloney (USA Representative), is the chair of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. She said that she appreciates the increased use of electric vehicles. She said that it is still not enough.
Maloney, D.N.Y. said that "The Postal Service should prioritize the acquisition electric vehicles" or "it will be stuck with outdated technology which further pollutes our environment over decades."
The Postal Service is currently replacing all the delivery trucks that were in service between 1987 and 1994.
The fleet of the Postal Service includes 190,000. There are more than 141,000 older models without safety features such as air bags, antilock brakes, and backup cameras.
They are also taller, making it easier for post carriers to pick up parcels and packages that have a higher volume. They have also improved ergonomics as well as climate control.
Converting the entire fleet of Postal Service vehicles to electric cars would add $3.3 billion. Biden's Build back Better plan, which was stalled in Congress, included money for this.