UPS appoints Scott Wicker as first chief sustainability officer

UPS has promoted its vice president of corporate plant engineering, Scott Wicker, to become the company’s first chief sustainability officer. The creation of the position recognizes the importance of sustainability issues and the expanding scope of the company’s efforts in that area, according to UPS chief operating officer David Abney.

Abney, to whom Wicker will report, said: “The long-term success of our company absolutely requires a balance of the environmental, economic and social aspects of the business. Sustainability encompasses all of those areas.”

In his new role Wicker works with six of the UPS top managers as part of a Corporate Sustainability Steering Committee.
He also oversees a cross-functional Sustainability Working Committee that sets key performance indicators and goals for the company.

Wicker said: “My role is to ensure that UPS continues to lead the industry in sustainable business practices; to introduce innovative, environmentally-responsible products to our customers, and to encourage employee engagement in the communities where they live and work.”

The new chief sustainability officer has had a 34-year career with UPS so far, starting out as a package loader before advancing through the company’s engineering ranks.

He has already been “deeply involved” in promoting sustainability at UPS, the company said, having set up an engineering group to manage the company’s global sustainability data as well as leading internal environmental initiatives.

“The discipline and systematic analytics we use in engineering are extremely valuable when devising internal sustainability programs,” Wicker said.

“Quantitative methodology ensures that our sustainability programs measure impact and keep us moving toward continuous improvement.”

Wicker will take forward sustainability efforts that has already seen UPS adopting standardised reporting guidelines for sustainability in logistics and transportation, working on programs including the Carbon Disclosure Project, the World Resources Institute, the Global Reporting Initiative and the US Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWay Transport Partnership.

The company has been promoting use of alternative fuels and transport options, such as hybrid vehicles that can achieve 28% better fuel economy than regular package cars, along with natural gas fuels for larger trucks.

UPS philanthropy has included charitable donations of more than $97m a year and more than 1.2m hours of volunteer work from its employees.

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