China’s major express delivery companies publish “green paper” to reduce environmental impact

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On the 6th of March, China’s major delivery service companies and the China Environmental Protection Foundation took the lead in launching the “multi-party co-governance and greener express delivery” (多方共治、快递更绿) initiative, calling on the whole of society to join in on green action, “letting every package be green like the spring breeze.”

In China, around 3 million express delivery drivers take to the roads every day, delivering more than 150 million parcels. Making express delivery services more green is a matter that relates both to the upstream merchants and to the downstream consumers. The initiative appeals to the whole of society, calling for collaborative innovation in production, education and research; making environmentally-friendly packaging materials cheap and easy to use; merchants promoting green packaging, making simple packaging more fashionable; promoting smart joint-distribution stations, building green logistics in the cities and involving everyone in sorting the garbage.

“This initiative will promote the formation of green development methods and lifestyles, and create an atmosphere in which the whole of society can save resources and protect the environment,” said Xu Guang, chairman and secretary general of the China Environmental Protection Foundation.

“If China’s 50 billion express deliveries all used green packaging, a rough estimate of the added cost would be at least 10 billion yuan, which is difficult to achieve for any enterprise” said Niu Zhijing, head of the Green Hand Alliance. She explained that the common effort of millions of businesses and hundreds of millions of consumers with the support of the government will be needed to make China’s express delivery industry the world’s greenest as well as its largest.

Tang Yanju, vice-secretary of the China Natural Resources Recycling Association, pointed out that more than 90% of delivery boxes are made out of recycled boxes, not trash. She affirmed that the key to the greening process is to control “white pollution” and increase recycling. Zhu Daoli, honorary president of the Sino-US Logistics Research Institute of Shanghai Jiaotong University, pointed out that express delivery does not stop at packaging, but also includes a series of links such as warehousing, transportation and distribution, which require government actions, laws, and regulations to be adequately addressed.

Also on March 6th, the Green Hand Alliance released the 2018 “green report card” announcing a “back to the box plan” to recycle tens of millions of boxes. The report also includes Dunhuang’s plan to plant over 1,000 acres of trees, the founding of the China Express Delivery Green Innovation Lab, the launching of green logistics R & D funding, and the announcement of the International Ecology Award being awarded to The Greden Logistics City Project.