Herbert-Michael Zapf, President and CEO of International Post Corporation, presented IPC’s postal sustainability programme at the Low Carbon Earth Summit 2013, which took place from 26 to 28 September at the Qujiang International Conference Center in Xi’an, China. The IPC Environmental Measurement and Monitoring System (EMMS) was one the case studies presented at the event, illustrating how a service industry can address its footprint on a global scale. Placed under the main theme of “Breathing new life into green challenges”, this year’s edition of the Low Carbon Summit aimed to discuss possible ways to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases, following the lack of progress at international negotiations. Mr Zapf presented the EMMS programme, initiated in 2009 as one of the first global industry initiatives of that kind. He explained the programme’s approach and methodology, outlined the results so far and shared the key learnings taken from the past years. As an industry with one of the largest service infrastructure – including one of the largest vehicle fleets – in the world and with overall emissions equaling those of the city of New York, the postal industry has a responsibility to address its targets, said Mr Zapf. As postal companies are operating in an increasingly global and interconnected market, a global approach based on internationally recognised standards and third-party audited results is the most appropriate way to achieve their goals. At the launch of the EMMS programme, the postal operators participating in the programme committed to reducing their CO2 emissions by 20% by 2020 compared to the 2008 baseline. Today, participating posts are on track to achieve this goal well ahead of schedule. Among the key learnings taken from EMMS, the IPC CEO insisted on the key importance of strong support and commitment from the chief executive officers as well as the main customers. He also highlighted that business and environment sustainability should not be seen as contradictory; instead, sustainability should be seen as being fully part of the business process. In today’s context of declining mail volumes and lower revenues for posts, carbon efficiency allows to save costs but also to generate new revenues. For more information on the summit, please visit http://www.lcesummit.com/.