Edition 2022 | Valid until 31.12.2025
The number of (parcel) shipments is growing steadily; in 2020 alone, more than 4 billion shipments were delivered. The main reason is the increase in online purchases. The resulting transport processes are especially responsible for emitting greenhouse gases, particulate matter and NOx, as well as noise. A particularly relevant part of these environmental impacts occurs on the so-called "last mile", that is, the last leg of the journey, such as the transport from the parcel centre with the 3.5 t delivery vehicle to the recipients.
Last mile delivery service refers to the delivery of goods from locally based retailers or regional warehouses of large online retailers to end customers. These deliveries are often carried out by local delivery service providers. This is a broad field of quite differently positioned market players, from bicycle couriers to regional courier and transport providers to the local branches of the large internationally active transport and delivery service providers.
The Blue Angel is awarded to delivery services that travel the last mile with the lowest possible emissions and avoid multiple deliveries through alternative pick-up points or delivery concepts. The use of alternative pick-up points, such as parcel stations or parcel shops that are close to home and can be reached without a car, is particularly beneficial to the environment. The transport vehicles used are either non-motorised or electric and fuelled with green electricity.
Since instant or rush deliveries are usually associated with low utilisation of the means of transport and are therefore problematic from an environmental point of view, they are excluded from the Blue Angel. Furthermore, delivery services carried out under unfavourable or socio-politically questionable working conditions are excluded.
With this eco-label, retailers together with delivery service providers can proactively offer their customers a delivery that meets the conditions of the Blue Angel, provided that the relevant requirements are fulfilled in each case.
The current form of the eco-label does not include the further, upstream delivery processes (e.g. transports from the warehouses of supra-regionally active online retailers via the collection warehouse and distribution centre to the destination or delivery warehouse). This transport step is usually carried out under completely different logistical conditions than the final delivery. However, it is intended that future revisions of the current eco-label award criteria will review whether appropriate environmental requirements can be formulated here as well.
The type of goods shipped and their environmental compatibility are generally not covered by the environmental labelling of delivery services.