UPS has announced that by 2020, one-in-four new fleet vehicles it buys will be alternative fuelled and feature advanced technology, up from 16% today.

The decision is one of a number of environmental targets published  in the parcel firm’s 2016 Corporate Sustainability Report, which supports UPS’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from ground operations by 12% by 2025.

“Because of our size and scale, we know our commitments can shape markets, advance technologies and be a catalyst for infrastructure investments,” said David Abney, UPS chairman and CEO.

“We rely on the ingenuity of our employees, suppliers and technology partners to help us reach goals that will transform the shipping industry and spur innovation.”

UPS already operates more than 8,300 alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles worldwide.

The company’s fleet includes electric, hybrid electric, hydraulic hybrid, compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, propane and lightweight fuel-saving composite body vehicles.

It uses a 'rolling laboratory' approach to determine which alternative fuels and technologies work best in each situation.

“As part of this ‘rolling laboratory’ of alternative delivery vehicles, we have been deploying electrically assisted cargo tricycles for package pick-up and delivery in central urban locations across Europe,” said ‎Peter Harris, director of sustainability, Europe at UPS.

“In fact, we recently launched such an initiative in Dublin, Ireland and will be trialling one in London soon.”

You can read more about UPS's urban logistics trials in an exclusive interview with Harris that Freightinthecity conducted earlier this year.