Customer Success Stories

UPS’s Big Brown Fleet Wins Customer Praise as One of Today’s Greenest Fleets

Winning CSR Awards

Gaining Customer & Community Support

Reducing Emissions & Footprint

Running Cleaner For Drivers

No one can accuse UPS of not embracing its unofficial moniker of “Big Brown.” The world’s largest package delivery company is well known for its fleet of brown trucks and team of uniformed delivery specialists that service cities and towns across the globe. The Atlanta-based company even sponsored a Kentucky Derby horse named “Big Brown.” Though they’ve abandoned the federal trademark on the use of the name, they continue to operate vehicles with the same color that their original fleet first debuted in 1965.

It’s surprising that the largest package delivery company in the world, which operates a fleet of close to 100,000 vehicles and one of the largest airlines in the world, is symbolized by a color slightly darker than dirt, while also operating as one of the greenest companies in business today.

“UPS is committed to expanding our use of alternative fuels, including renewable natural gas, to minimize our impact to the environment.”

-Mark Wallace, Sr. VP of Global Engineering & Sustainability

Winner of numerous environmental and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) awards, including the 2014 EPA Climate Leadership Award for the voluntary reduction in GHG contributions, UPS proves their commitment to sustainability year after year. So, it only made sense that the heart of their business of transporting goods included sustainable and environmentally responsible practices. After hearing about the numerous environmental advantages of fueling with natural gas fuel, UPS reached out to Clean Energy in 2011, to build a station and test a few compressed natural gas (CNG) fueled trucks in Las Vegas.

“Investment in a fuel-efficient technology that helps reduce our carbon footprint and reduce our dependence on petroleum remains a key component of UPS’s transport strategy,” said Mike Britt, Director of Vehicle Engineering at UPS.

Seeing the benefits of natural gas fueling and facing increased volatility in 2013’s oil market, UPS again expanded their alternative fueling initiative by contracting the Clean Energy team to fuel and build a station in Texas to support its large over-the-road fleet. And in 2014, UPS expanded their use of natural gas by using Clean Energy to fuel fleets in Florida and California.

With a very public goal of driving 1 billion miles in their specialized fleet by the end of 2017, UPS is taking another step forward as a leader in sustainability by expanding their use of Redeem™, Clean Energy’s renewable natural gas (RNG) fueling option and the cleanest fuel commercially available today. Today, UPS fuels hundreds of its delivery vehicles in California and Texas with Redeem™ RNG.

“UPS is committed to expanding our use of alternative fuels, including renewable natural gas, to minimize our impact to the environment. Renewable natural gas turns naturally occurring methane into an alternative fuel that replaces diesel and its carbon emissions,” says Mark Wallace, UPS’s Senior Vice President for Global Engineering and Sustainability.

UPS even provides carbon emissions data with industry leading accuracy and detail to help customers understand, monitor and manage their climate impacts. Based on their carbon inventory, the fuel they burn within their network, they use a patented calculator to determine how many metric tons of greenhouse gases arise from customers’ shipping activity, then provide detailed emission reports broken down by mode and scope.

Though they’re not certainly not ready to give up on the patent brown color for their vehicles, planes or uniforms, they are certainly proud to be operating one of the greenest fleets in the world.