Environmental management at the IB

"As requested by the Universal Postal Union member countries, I am determined to make the UPU secretariat, the International Bureau, a showcase for sustainable development for the sector it represents and among the United Nations agencies. Recognizing that our activities as secretariat have an impact on the environment, we will continue our efforts to achieve climate neutrality by regularly measuring and reducing our carbon footprint. In leading by example through the implementation of greener approaches to managing our activities, resources and facilities, we will also prove that sound environmental management makes business sense."

Bishar A. Hussein, UPU Director General

The UPU works actively to monitor and minimize the environmental footprint resulting from the activities of its headquarters, the International Bureau.

Every year, the UPU assesses and reports on its performance through the UN-wide environmental inventory "Greening the Blue", managed by Sustainable United Nations. The results are published in the United Nation’s sustainability report. The IB also works together with other UN agencies to streamline sustainability practices across the UN system.

Over the last eight years, the IB has worked consistently to minimize its carbon footprint. The IB is now climate neutral.

Examples of other ways in which the IB addresses its environmental impact:

  • Staff are encouraged to travel by train instead of plane when possible
  • To further decrease air travel by UPU staff, the IB is fostering the use of e-communication technologies with the installation of videoconferencing rooms and the provision of teleconference and webcast tools
  • The renovation of the facade of the IB building, performed in compliance with the Swiss Minergie standard, helped decrease energy consumption by 45%
  • The IB procures 100% renewable energy (hydropower electricity with green certificate)
  • Waste is monitored and limited. Particular emphasis has been put on paper consumption, resulting in a 30% reduction between 2008 and 2016

Find out more about the UPU's efforts in the area of internal environmental management on the Greening the Blue Website.

Greening the Blue report 2017

The UN system's environmental footprint and efforts to reduce it.

Moving Towards a Climate Neutral UN: The UN System's Footprint and Efforts to Reduce It

Results of the UPU and 65 UN agencies (2015 edition).