Cradle to Cradle in Practice: USPSPosted: June 22, 2011
The United States Postal Service was interested in the Cradle to Cradle philosophy and a movement towards more sustainable business practice. This first stage of the ongoing effort was completed in September 2010. Areas of the USPS business that CBDC looked at include alternative fuels for transportation, greener production facilities, recycling or ‘upcycling’ processes for waste but the predominate focus was on the USPS range of envelopes and packages.
2 years of design research and work on the USPS product range where MBDC established 350 component materials which a further comprise 1800 individual ingredients. An important aspect of the MBDC approach is the recognition that a business is an economical and financial unit and much of its work is the practical integration of sustainable design into the business.
For UPS to achieve the certification on its product range involved working with 20 primary and 250 additional suppliers across the world in assessing and changing the materials that make up the product. Today there are 700 million certified envelopes and packages produced annually. USPS as a business and MBDC as consultants recognize the significanceof an ongoing process and a long term approach. A corporation can’t change its process overnight and would never undertake environmental practice if it were uneconomical. USPS currently has a sustainability department with key areas of focus and an implementation strategy that was developed with and will continue to work on with MBDC. http://www.mbdc.com